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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  April 4, 2011 8:30am-12:00pm EDT

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as soon as i got to the commission back in 2001 and pointing out that the internet could be in some peril because of potential gatekeeper control. i'm proud of reaching out to nontraditional stakeholders, native americans and the disabilities come to mind, people who are so profoundly impacted by decisions that are made at the fcc but often did not have input at the big company with the lawyers and the lobbyists in washington, d.c. have. so i think all of that was important. of course, i was there during the dtv transition and was acting chairman, too, so it's been, it's been a wonderful experience. as i say, my thoughts now are mostly on the rest of this year, but when i leave the commission, i not leave -- i will not leave these issues behind.
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of. >> host: any structural changes you'd like to see in how the fcc operates? >> guest: you know, one thing i would like to see and i hope we can get the congress to respond is to change the so-called closed meeting rule. we are prohibited at the commission from more than two commissions ever talking to one another unless it's a public meeting. so unlike congress or unlike the courts, we can't just sit down around a table, and you could general counsel present so it's a matter of public record and talk. there's five people there. each one has a different skill set and range of experiences that he or she brings with them, and there's a lot that can be done with regard to that. there's legislation that has been introduced by chairwoman eshoo and congressman doyle and congressman shimkus, and i am really hoping that that will move ahead because i think a lot of, i think it would expedite the business at the commission. we all get along well right now,
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but i think it would take it to a new level of collegiality and getting things done, and we might have avoided some of the problems we've had in the past. so if i could have one reform just magically appear before i leave, that would be it. >> host: and, amy schatz, you have a final question for the commissioner. >> host: actually, it's a follow up on that question. to play devil's advocate, some people would argue already the fcc does so many things behind closed doors and those public meetings are so scripted that it's almost worse to have you around a table deciding things because the public doesn't get involved. >> guest: i don't agree with that because members of congress when they're crafting legislation and bills are talking, members of the court before they decide a supreme court case sit around and talk about it. you have to have some protections. i mean, you wouldn't let three people of one party meet and gang up on the other two. it wouldn't be supersecret. you'd have office of general counsel there, you would have some sort of a record, but it's just the way that you need to do
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business. why should this be the one institution that effects other executive agencies too? why should they be denied this opportunity to share experiences and perspectives and kind of work stuff out around the table? and i just think it would expedite business. i don't know how different the final results are going to be. i think they would probably be better, but, you know, there's plenty of opportunity right now for the staff to get together or for you to do one-on-one, i guess. but we're missing important opportunities for some positive interaction that i think could lead to some positive policy outcomes. >> host: commissioner michael copps, as always, thank you for being on "the communicators." and amy schatz of "the wall street journal," thank you as well. >> guest: thanks for having me. >> "the communicators" is c-span's weekly look at the issues and people impacting telecommunications policy in the digital age. if you missed any of this discussion with fcc commissioner michael comes on the proposed
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at&t purchase of t-mobile, catch "the communicators" again tonight and each monday night at 8 p.m. eastern right here on c-span2. >> coming up, deputy secretary of state james steinberg speaks before the house foreign affairs committee on u.s. interests in many libya. and later, the senate returns at 2 eastern for general speeches followed by debate and a vote on a judicial nomination to the u.s. circuit court of appeals. live gavel-to-gavel coverage here on c-span2. also today, an examination of class and economic disparities in america. writer and political scientist charles murray, author of "the bull curve," discusses his theories in the lecture "the state of white america." you can see the forum live at 5:30 eastern on our companion network, c-span3. and tomorrow, a memorial service for longtime washington
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post reporter david broder who died last month at the age of 81. known as the dean of the washington press corps, he won the pulitzer prize in 1973 for his commentary about watergate. dan bowles and don graham of "the washington post" and vice president biden are expected to attend. our live coverage gibbs tomorrow -- begins tomorrow from the national press club at 12:15 p.m. eastern, also on c-span3. the c-span video lie prayer has just won a peabody award for its contribution to history, scholarship and public life. now a year old, you can watch every program that's aired on the c-span networks since 1987. over 170,000 hours of archived video all searchable, share bl and free. it's washington your way. now, a house foreign affairs committee hearing on u.s. interests in libya. testifying before the panel is deputy secretary of state james steinberg who compares military actions in if libya to nato's
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1999 bombing campaign in kosovo. this begins with opening statements from committee members who expressed concerns with the mission, u.s. support for rebel forces and the administration's decision not to seek formal approval from congress. this is about two hours and 25 minutes. [inaudible conversations] >> the committee will come to order. after recognizing myself and the ranking member, my good friend mr. berman of california, for seven minutes each for ourafte opening statements, i will recognize each member for one minute each for opening statements.. we will then hear from ourutes witness, thank you, and i would ask that you summarize your prepared statement to fiveembe minutes before we move to theopn question and answer period unde the five-minute rule. without objection, mr. steinberg's preparedefo statement will be made a part of the record, and members may have five days to insert statements
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and questions for the record subject to the lengtherg' limitations in the rules. and the chair now recognizes herself for seven minutes. and, mr. deputy secretary steinberg, i would like toles. recognize the iranian-americans from my district and around ther nation who are in the audiencee with us this morning and havee family members in iraq. they're extremely concerned about the safety and the welfare of the residents and the actions of the iraqi government against them. and i urge the state department to insure that iraqi government will comply with its obligations under the forces of agreement and international human rights standards. thank you, sir. the president's address to the nation on monday on the situation on libya was a welcome development but left many questions unanswered. the president justified in intervention by asserting, quote, there will be times when our safety is not directly threatened, but our interests
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and values are, end quote. the president has also said that he authorized military actionet to, quote, enforce u.n. securite council resolution 1973 and the writ of the international community, end quote. quote enf security resolution 1973, and the writ of the international community, end quote. whether we agreer odisagree with the decision to intervene in libya, concerns are raised across both sides of the aisle about implied future obligations under the ability to protect, which was first generated in a u.n. resolution more than a year ago which the u.n. has endorsed but failed to refine. the reports of a senior director of multilateral affairs on the u.s. council staff samantha power led the charge to intervene in libya based on this principle over the objection of military planners only compounds these concerns. some americans therefore question whether we have assumed
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obligations to forcibly respond to crises everywhere, including the ivory coast, sudan or syria. another area of concern is the scope, duration and objective of the nato-led operation and the political mission that have not been sufficiently defined. nor have the anticipated short, medium and long-term commitments of the united states. the president has called for gadhafi to step down and in favor of a government that is more representative of the libyan people. however, administration officials have also said that gadhafi, himself, is not a target, and that the united states is not pursuing regime change, but then reuters reported yesterday afternoon that the president had signed a quote secret order recognizing covert u.s. support for rebel forces seeking to oust the libyan leader and the president said that the objective was to steady pressure, but not
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military and also through the other means to force gadhafi out, end quote. so mr. deputy secretary, which is it? what is our objective? further, what are the c contingency plans if gadhafi is able to cling to power? would a political agreement that left gadhafi in power be an acceptable outcome? what are the implications for libya, for the region and for the united states if the civil war reaches a stalemate? when referring to libyan opposition, is the president referring to armed rebels, to members of the transitional council or to both? and what do we know about the armed forces? what do we know about the members of the transitional council? what assurances do we have that they will not pose a threat to the united states if they succeed in toppling gadhafi. and how will opposition forces both political and military be vetted? just yesterday secretary clinton
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stated that resolution 1973 amended or overroad previous security resolutions imposing an arms embargo in libya. the secretary said quote, amended or overroad the prohibition on arms for anyone in libya so that there could be a legitimate transfer of arms if a country should choose to do that, end quote. mr. secretary, i ask how is the u.s. defining legitimate? does the administration contend that u.n. security council resolution 1973 overrides u.s. prohibitions? and does that u.n., does that mean that the u.n. resolutions create u.s. laws? there are reports that some opposition figures have links to al qaeda and extreme itself groups who have fought against our forces in iraq. so my constituents are asking, just who are we helping, and are
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we sure they are true allies who won't turn and work against us? these are valid concerns particularly given the administration's less than stellar record on promoting democracy and governance in libya which would have included funding organizations run by the gadhafi family had this committee not intervened by not signing off on this funding. the record of transfers of military-related items involving libya is disconcerting. for example, over a year, i requested a detailed national interest justification for proposed weapons transfers to libya. the department failed to give us that written justification. ultimately the proposed transfers were drawn and only after gadhafi began the slaughter of civilians. remarkably however the committee received the letter from secretary clinton earlier this the week regarding the
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consultation process for defense sales and seeking to limit the time for congressional review. it is ironic that ill-advised weapons transfers to the gadhafi regime were stopped only as a result of this committee's due diligence and now the state department complains about our efforts to carry out due diligence on weapons transfers. i hope that the administration will commit to work with congress effectively and transparenctly to address vital foreign policy concerns regarding arm sales. the committee will press for answers on the u.s. strategy in libya going forward and our short, medium and long-term commitments. now i'm pleased to yield to my good friend mr. burrman for his opening remarks. >> well, thank you very much, madam chairman, for calling this timely hearing and before i begin the opening remarks, let me just for on a personal note and then i think on behalf of
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the committee thank you very much deputy secretary steinberg for your exemplary service to the country. we will miss you. i enjoyed on so many different issues working with you, and my own personal feeling is that former deputy secretary lu is not as prickly as felix and perhaps you were as combative and argumentative as oscar, you were not as sloppy. and you have to read the secretary's release before you know what i'm talking about here, but anyway, i do wish you the best of luck, and it is a betterment for syracuse university, and we will miss you. president obama's response to the crisis in libya may provoke
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questions that are not fully answerable at this time, but i believe it was the right policy, because the alternative acquiescence in the face of mass murder was intenable, and i believe it was done in the right way, namely with the cooperation of the international community. president obama's policy has unquestionably saved many lives and probably tens of thousands of them, and it has weakened a brutal dictator and egregious t. it will also cause other dictatorial regimes to think twice before they use unbridled violence against peaceful protesters. we have been focusing on protection and doing so in a way that spreads the burden among our allies in some arab countries. the president has stated clearly that the united states military goals are limited in line with the relevant u.n. security council resolution together with our allies and america's
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military mission has been one, to implement a no-fly zone and to stop the regime's attacks from the air, and secondly to take other measures which are necessary to protect the libyan people. america's involvement in libya directly supports the united states' national interests. first, the united states plays a unique role as global anchor for security and advocate for human freedom. in libya, we embraced this important role heed-on by preventing a mad man from slaughtering his own people, and secondly, libya's neighbors tunisia and lebanon have just went into their own quest for freedom. if the violence spills over, it would be a violent outcome. this is not in the interest of the united states or the allies. we have to recognize that this
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operation is not going to be a success unless it ends with the demise of the gadhafi regime. the reason is clear. the mandate for this operation is that it protect libyan civilians, and yet we all know there is no enduring protection for the libyan people as long as gadhafi remains in power. we also must acknowledge something else that we don't know exactly how gadhafi will be brought down. the president has placed limits on the operation of which i agree, we do not want american boots on the ground. we do not want the operation to be too costly. we do not want it to divert resources from afghanistan and iraq. at the end of the day, however, we have put our leadership prestige on the line, whether voluntarily by the hand of his own people or as a result of the coalition action, it is essential that gadhafi go. mr. secretary, i hope you will enlighten us how the current strategy of sanctions and
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international isolation combined with military pressure will hasten the removal of gadhafi from power as much as can be discussed in this unclassified setting. i think that we all understand however that there is no easy recipe. we are all aware of the reports yesterday, and this morning about cia operatives allegedly in libya with the rebels. again, this is an unclassified setting, and i would not expect you to classify on the reports, but can you tell us if the administration has made a decision to provide direct military support to the rebels? we would also like to know what the implications are of the handover of the operation go? will the transition be seamless? will the operation look essentially the same as it has in the past two weeks? will other nato member states pick up the operations that we are ceasing to perform? will nato maintain the tempo of the operation once the u.s. assumes a supporting role? further, i want to hear your thinking of the post-gadhafi
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era, and maybe it is premature, but we must be prepared if if the region rapidly crumbles under the opposing strategy. in hearing about the post-gadhafi era we want to hear about your thoughts of the transition council and the viability and the goals and the members and the support of the libyan people. in i other contenders for power in the post gadhafi libya? if we believe it is a likely air to pow e, whwepower, what is th recognizing it like the french? wouldn't it help the sense of isolation? and does the council include elements that should cause us concern and how do we make certain that a successor regime does not resort to the same thuggish tactics that are gadhafi's hallmark? we have had a long and difficult history with gadhafi as the blood of many americans are on
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his hands. for a brief period we were willing to tentatively open up a new chapter with him after he agreed to give up weapons of mass destruction and related materials years ago, but when he saw him firing on his people we had to act, because we know from the bitter cynical disregard for human life and the casual willingness to commit murder an inflict torture just to stay in power. mr. secretary, before closing, i want to raise two specific humanitarian issues at differing levels of urgency. first and most urgently, there is a humanitarian disaster in misrata and why have we not established sea corridor relief in misraw to relieve the terrible suffering. i understand there are 1,700 libyan students in this case in the united states who can't get access to the monthly stipends
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because of our approacpriate decision to freeze libyan funds. is that accurate? if we are, then how do we rectify this situation? and i would like to say how imperative it is that we keep our eye on the ball at all times. i was eager to see that belarus neft and i would also be remiss if i said that we have once again imposed sanctions on a company who does no business in the united states. that is symbolic sanction, and that is the case when we did it on the swiss-based but iranian based niko. when we do that, we are sending an iranian signal more of weakness than strength and having no impact on the economy. such impact is very point of sanctions, and with that, madam
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chairman, i yield back my nine seconds. well, actually, it is going the other way. >> thank you, mr. burrman, but i thank you for talking about the iran sanctions, and i totally agree with that. i am happy to yield to my colleague from new jersey about the humanitarian efforts and the human rights. >> thank you. i am grateful to the u.s. military personnel and the forces for courage and tenacity, they have used to enact u.n. security resolutions 1970 and 1973. while the forces have heroically taking on another can combat mission in the middle east and performed well, i am concerned about the the use of force in libya and more particularly about the path that the administration took to bring us to this point. i know that the undersecretary will answer our questions and ably as he has done an extraordinary job as
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undersecretary, but i would like to know when we first initiated military action, did the administration know who the leaders of the rebel fosts were? what were the aspirations? surging or giving commitments that they will seek a democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights? i think that is all important e especially when we risk the lives of our men and women in uniform to give them air support. i have a number of questions, but i'm out of time. >> thank you, mr. ackerman. the ranking member of theel e te east and southeast asia. >> mr. secretary, thank you so much for your service. you have done an excellent job and you are always so cooperative for the members of this committee. i would like to use my one minute to be intraspective about what is happening across the capitol from both political
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parties, because i am in a bit trouble on the reaction to the president's announcements that have occurred from members of congress in both houses. regardless of party, i don't think that the predisposition to liking the president or disliking the president is a substitute for questioning and evaluating foreign policy. we should be doing that on a nonpartisan basis. i was particularly troubled by so many people who just rubber stamped what the president was doing without thinking about it and equally troubled by those who were critical of the president for doing what they suggested to do in the first place and then were critical of him for doing it after he did it. we have to be more careful because we are in a juncture of american history and we have to analyze and appreciate what we
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are doing about that. >> thank you. >> i want to thank the chair for having this hearing so early. i remember during the war in iraq, it was a year before we had a hearing on iraq. >> thank you, mr. ackerman. thank you. mr. burton, the chairman on the subcommittee in europe and eurasia is recognized. >> thank you, madam chairwoman. i have questions that i hope we will cover today. first of all, congress was not involved in at all in this decision-making process, but the united nations was, and the arab league was, and it seems to me that we should have been involved very, very much at the beginning of this. the defense secretary said this was not a national security interest but of interest and why is that? there are people who are supposedly terrorists and brad sherman yesterday at the closed hearing gave names of people who
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have fought us in afghanistan and iraq, and why are we supporting people who may be terrorists or are terrorists and giving us a hard time down the road? you know, i just don't know how we pick these things. the ivory coast, there is a carnage there, and do we have no-fly zone and bomb people there? why did we pick libya and not the ivory coast, because there is more carnage there. >> thank you. mr. payne, the chairman of the committee on global human rights. >> thank you for allowing us to have one minute and mr. steinberg for your commitment. let me say that i guess that anything that the president does is wrong. i heard someone say if he walked on water, they would say he couldn't swim. so, the fact that six months ago
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or a year ago when the lockerbie bomber was released, everybody how terrible it is, and now libya is the worst place in the world, and now people are wondering why we are in libya, and all of the sudden in a year, there is a total change in our position against libya. it is sort of strange. i don't know whether it is who called for action, rather than the action taken. i also would like to know certainly our responsibility to protect is something that is certainly very important. i think that we like to find out about nato's roles, and id'd also like to know about the treatment of the so-called minorities in libya right now who haveeen accused of being supportive of the mercenaries. >> thank you. mr. ro rbach.
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>> i give high marks to this committee and administration about how this has been handled. yes, we are up against radical islam and we will hear more about that as this hearing goes on, but if the united states was not engaged to help them fight for freedom and those people who want to overthrow tie ranyrants clupgs in t corruption in the islamic world, we need to be engaged and we do not need to send troops on the ground. if the president sends troops on the ground, you have lost me, but this is consistent to help those people fight for their own freedom is what we did in the reagan years. it is called the reagan years. we didn't put people all over the world to help them get action, but we put people all over the world to help those people fighting for freedom. i have been in indirect contact with the leaders of libya of the revolutionary movement that they will repay the united states for
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every cent we spend helping them free themselves from the gadhafi dictatorship, so i am looking forward to the hearing, and i think they have handled the situation very well. >> mr. meeks, from the subcommittee on europe and euras eurasia. mr. sherman, i apologize, you were there first. mr. carter. mr. sherman is next. >> i hope to learn today whether the administration will comply with section 5 of the war powers act or whether in the guise of promoting democracy in libya, they are going to undermine democracy and the rule of law in the united states. the administration says that this is cost us only $600 million so far, and they arrived at the number using marginal costs. any cpa would tell you that you
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should focus on the full costs which would reveal that this is costing what the american people think it is costing, that is to say millions of dollars a week. the $30 billion we seized from libya and gadhafi assets should be used immediately to defer these costs. gadhafi has american blood on his hands, but so do some of of the rebel commanders. ..that the rebels extradite these criminals or at least use their best effo efforts, and it starts with stopping cooperation with and seeking incarceration of the man who brags about the efforts he made against our troops in afghanistan and iraq. i yield back. >> thank you. mr. royce, subcommittee on proliferation and trade. >> two weeks ago the secretary of trade was here and i suggested that we know how to
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jam gadhafi's communication system and do it. there is no cost to doing it. >> i think for many of us we recognize we have a $14 trilliof debt, and we have spent a half , billion dollars in a few days on this operation. we spent a half a billion in a few days in the operation. the estimates are that it is going to be for six months no-fly zone and expensive proposition. we have $33 billion right now in frozen libyan assets, and we need to put those to use. the president boasts about a coalition, and it is time for the coalition to open its checkbook. if we are going to proceed, it needs to be offset dollar per dollar. because at the end of the day, there are costs to our security, too. we focus, you know, away from our strategic threats. it has taken us far too long for
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example to exit iraq. so now we have this added commitment. >> thank you. >> the only way for it to go down is to payer for it out of the libyan assets. >> thank you, mr. royce. now, we reready ready tread rr to hear from mr. meeks, and this better be a good minute, because you had a lot of time to prepare. >> thank you. any time the president of the united states commits our military to a mission, it is a sobering moment. i have my full share of questions about the actions in regard to libya, but i want to take the opportunity at the outset of the hearing to get on the record my appreciation for a key component of the particular engagement which is the fact that we are operating in a multilateral operation with nato coalition forces and measures to
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institute a no-fly zone, and also to comply by initiative 1973. for my case, the objectives and the methods of odyssey dawn were made clear by the administration. with that said, i expect for the administration to work closely with congress as we mo forward. i recognize it is a developing situation, and we know that days ago the coalition convened in london to discuss next steps politically and otherwise. today, i look forward to getting more of the details and answers that will help to inform my perspective in the decision-making process of congress. >> thank you, sir. chairman chavitz. >> thank you. my concern is that the administration had plenty of time to get the authorization of the u.n., and the arab league
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and yet they could not find time in that period of time between president obama indicating that gadhafi had to go, and actually taking military action, to actually consult the elected representatives of the american people. that should have been a priority under these circumstances, and there was time. president bush got the authorization of congress before going into iraq, afghanistan and his father did in kuwait, and that was a, i think, a key mistake on this administration's part, and also far too much confusion. for example on saying that gadhafi has to go, and no, he does not necessarily have to go. i think that should be very clear. and we also have to have much better insight on just who these rebels are. thank you. >> thank you so much. my list indicates that mr. connolly is next. recognized for one minute. >> thank you, madam chairman, and mr. secretary, job well done, and you will be missed.
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you know, it is important to remember that in this exercise of limited intervention by the united states, we are operating under a legal framework and what makes this different from other places like yemen and bahrain is that for the first time we had an arab league resolution calling for a no-fly zone in a fellow arab country. we had a u.n. security resolution and two of them, 1970 and 1973 calling explicitly for all necessary means to stop the bloodshed in libya. the united states is part of that lawful international community and responded. responded in a limited way with a coalition. i look forward to this hearing and i look forward in particular, mr. secretary, to your outlining not only and expanding on this legal framework of the president's response, but also how the administration views the necessary consultation with congress as this event unfolds, and i was pleased to hear mr.
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rorback's support. >> thank you. >> i thank the chairwoman and once again the american people are suckered into one more war, illegal, unconstitutional and undeclared. we have been doing this since world war ii and we have been doing it and it is not good for this country. this is to be a preventive war. they say a slaughter, but so far, there has not been a slaughter slaughter. in checking the records the best i can, there is no slaughter, but it is reported already that our bombs have killed more than 40 civilians, so how can you save a country by killing civilians? this is a bad war. if we got into it incorrectly, it will not help us and unfortunately, i don't see that this administration or any administration is the going to
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move back on this until we are totally bankrupt. it is important tos a sess this properly and the way we go to war is important. just not getting token permission, we should never go to war without a full declaration, and it should be strongly bipartisan. >> thank you, dr. paul. mr. higgins of new york. >> thank you, mr. secretary. i look forward to the testimony today. over the last several days we have heard debate about our involvement in libya. everybody seems to be look g in for false clarity and the fact is that war is ambiguous and i would rather have cautious ambiguity than false clarity. having said that, we are involved in other conflicts in the region. i think that the libyan situation is different from that of egypt per se when that movement is organic or this is very different. we don't know what we will get
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in the end. we are reminded of the united states efforts to assist the mujahadine to break the soviet invasion in afghanistan and that morphed into the taliban. this is a very, very complicated situation, and we have to treat it as such, and understand the complexities of the region and the country and apply them to realistic policies from which we can proceed. i look forward to your testimony. >> thank you so much. the vice chair of the subcommittee on middle east and south asia is recognized. mr. pence of indiana. >> thank you for calling on me, madam chairman and i thank the secretary for his years of service to the country. we are at war with libya. i know there is careful parsing of words to describe our military action and no-fly plus and the rest. we are at war with libya. though i am troubled with how we went to war in libya, i will
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never jeopardize support for thep troos, but i don't believe that the president of the united states has the authority to take america to war without congressional approval where the safety and the vital national interests are not threatened. i also don't believe in limited war. i believe if america chooses to go to war, then by god, you go to war to win. the president said this week it would be a mistake to broaden our mission. he said quote we went down that road in iraq. we are going down a different rode. in iraq, we had objective and congressional bipartisan approval in both houses, and then through sacrifice of blood and treasure and we pro vail ev. with no approval in either house, and spilling of blood, and i would like to know in the course of conversation today,
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why congress should not immediately bring an authorization to the floor of the housef representatives to define our mission or end this mission and bring the clarity that the constitution and the american people expect. >> thank you. thank you. mrs. schwartz of pennsylvania is recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. i would also like to add my words of acknowledgment to the members of the armed forces who have once again stepped into harm's way, and this time as part of a international coalition to stop a gadhafi regime who is intent on destroying human rights. the administration has said that the crisis intervention be limited and have the endorsement of the u.n. and the arab league and the african union. the president has upheld the promise by handing off the lead command to the international coalition. the fact that the international coalition is there is critical.
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it is a clear regional and international agreement on the use of military force to protect civilians and coalition leadership and that we do not assume sole responsibility for the operation costs. in addition to the involvement of the united states there is more pressure on gadhafi which is a good thing. we will hear more on that and freezing more than $30 billion of gadhafi assets. the capabilities have been seriously degraded, however, the outcome of the intervention is uncertain. i share the concern of so many americans about the weeks ahead, and the concern about the possible escalation or the cost of increasing involvement. i look forward to the information provided in the hearing to answer the many questions that we will pose on behalf of the american people. >> thank you so much. mr. wilson of south carolina is recognized.
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oh, i'm sorry, mr. wilson has the minister of the day, so we will go to judge poe, and that is just the way it is. >> madam chair, no question about it, moammar gadhafi is a world outlaw and because he is a bad guy, it appears that the president has used military force in libya. i am concerned about the legal authority for such military action in libya. as the constitution and the war powers act has it been followed? maybe not. secretary of defense gates stated that libya is not in the vital interest of the united states, and why are we dropping bombs in the country? the president has indicated that gadhafi is treating the rebels in an inhumane way and therefore this obama doctrine of war in the name of humanity is troubling. si since our u.s. national security is not at stake, what constitutional authority do we have to be at war with libya?
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the constitutional may be inconvenient but it is meant to be. war is a serious matter and presidents and congress should be inkconvenienced on the roads to war. i yield back. >> thank you so much. mr. cicilline of rhode island. >> thank you, madam chairman and thank you for convening the timely hearing. thank you, mr. steinberg, for your testimony today. we all recognize that libya is a complicated set of events in a rapidly changing set of circumstance, and many of rus concerned, but i think that we're gratified to hear that the president's address to the nation, and while the ranking member has identified some issues where there is not absolute clarity or certainty, i'm anxious to hear from you so we can make the best decisions
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based on the most accurate decisions. i look forward to your testimony. >> from ohio, the gentleman? >> well, thank you for being here. with the onset of military action in libya, i'm troubled by the circumstances surrounding our nation's involvement there. having served in the united states air force for 26 years myself, my military experience has taught me that any mission must have clear objectives to be successful and unambiguous end state in mind from the onset. i appreciate the president providing the american people with the background leading to his decision, however, our engagement in this conflict should not have begun without a clear definition of the mission that we hope to accomplish with the military forces. it is troubling that the president did not discuss american involvement with the congress, but rather consulted with the united nations and the arab league for approval and i submit that is not who he gets his approval from.
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as we continue with the president's mission of protecting the people of libya, i hope to hear some clarification today on what the objectives are and the long-term national interests are, and what prompted the involvement there. >> thank you, sir. mr. cardoza of california. >> thank you, madam chair and your continued stewardship of the committee. i want to associate myself with the remarks of mr. ackerman, and mr. burrman and i echo them, and i won't repeat them. this is a serious time for pontiffication. i am concerned mr. secretary about who may have leaked the president's findings and whether or not that puts the men and women that we may or may not have on the ground in the intel jebs commu je -- intelligence in that country in jeopardy. we need to proceed cautiously,
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and this is a time for the committee to do the job and ask the tough questions, but also to understand the difficult challenge that the president and your department are engaged in. >> thank you, mr. cardoza. mrs. burkle. >> thank you, madam chair, and thank you for hosting this timely hearing this morning. thank you to deputy secretary steinberg for being here. if i could respectfully recommend that you buy a heavy winter coat and boots because syracuse university is in my district, and long hard winters there. i too, with my colleagues share the concerns we have heard here and i look forward to hearing the answers to the questions that we heard, why the u.n.? why the nato and the arab league was consulted before the congress and the american people. i look forward to this morning's hearing. >> thank you. mr. cirrus of new jersey.
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i apologize to my colleague, my fellow floridian, ted deutsche, and the one you love the most -- oh, no. mr. deutsche is recognized, and then we will go to our side. >> well, i will finish that statement later. >> yes, i stopped before i got myself in deeper trouble there. >> thank you, madam chair, and ranking members for holding this hearing. secretary steinberg, thank you for being here and good luck to you in the brutal syracuse winters. i would like to commend the state department and secretary clinton for her leadership in the passage of hr-1973. monday i was pleased to hear the president define the goals for the operation and reiterate to the american people there will be no u.s. troops on the ground.
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the situation intervened with the international community was one to stabilize a region on the brink. i look forward to hearing from you today, mr. secretary, and speak to your thoughts about what pressure is going to be necessary to assist the opposition in the quest to remove gadhafi from power, and short of that, short of that, when will we know that this engagement can and should end? i yield back. >> thank you, thank you. sorry, ted. mrs. elmers of north carolina. >> thank you, madam chairman and thank you mr. deputy secretary for being with us today. of course, this is just such an important hearing. you know, i join with my colleagues and all of the concerns. i look forward very much to your input so that we can understand these issues better. of course, my main concern is for our servicemen and women right now and their safety and especially at a time when we are stretched so thin in the military actions.
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i hope that i'll be able to head back to my constituents and explain that this is a finite action and that we have a secure strong military strategy and with that, i yield back the rest of my life. >> thank you. mr. cirrus, do not be mad. >> thank you, madam chair. >> you are so small. it is easy to jump over you. >> mr. secretary, congratulations and good luck in your next endeavor. i want to compliment the president for acting so quickly and commend him on working with the international community, and the nato committee, and especially on protecting the lives of the civilians in libya, but i am concerned now after we have thrown the first stone what is our next step? i read this morning where the gadhafi is taking back some of the cities. i was just wondering if you can comment on that and i wonder if you can comment on the foreign affairs ambassador who defected
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or is in france i think it is, and if you can comment on that if you have i in information from him that will help us to make a decision down the line. >> thank you. mr. moreno from pennsylvania. >> i yield my time. >> thank you. my other florida colleague, fredricka flores is recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. it is very interesting to me to have listened to so many people urge the president to establish a no-fly zone, to do something. there's a genocide in the making. we must do something. and then when he did something, the same people who urged him to do something are criticizing him. i think when he consulted with the leaders of congress which i
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am am sure i heard he did, i don't think that this is unprecedented. i think this has happened before, and i think that he is the commander in chief, and at some point in his administration, and every commander in chief's administration, they must make decisions that benefit the greater good of the country of the world with without having the opportunity to get permission as we call it. so, on march 17th when ambassador rice explained the vote in favor of resolution 1973 by stating that the security council -- >> thank you. >> have responded to the libyan's cries for help, the council's purpose is clear to protect innocent citizens. >> thank you, mrs. wilson. >> yes, madam chair. >> and now over to mr.
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fortenbury. >> thank you, madam chairman, for calling this hearing. we are called upon to help, and this has to do with the american taxpayer, and it is difficult for us to watch by and watch humanity be slaughtered before our eyes and the third is that we are a unique and exceptional super power, but in order to understand where we are now, we should look back a few short weeks when the united states was pressured to unilaterally pressured to implement a no-fly zone by this body, and when the french were willing to stop pontificating and put up their assets that allowed the u.s. to be a part of a coalition. i know that the scope and duration of this remain, but the scope will remain as to the robustment of the arab league commitment, and it was important to get that affirmation up
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front, and we need to know what assets they will put up. and libyan must be controlled and libya and north africans. and where is the commitment of resources? >> thank you so much. lastly, mr. murphy of connecticut. >> thank you very much, madam chair. i take faith in the president's promise that we are not going to engage in a third large scale intervention, but i do think that there are some important lessons that we can learn from the mistakes made in the communication between the administration and congress with respect to the iraq and afghanistan. we need to talk about cost and be honest about it. i appreciate the administration putting numbers on the table so soon and we have to make sure they are worst case and not best case numbers. while i want clear objectives, i want to be honest about the fact that the terminology and the explanations are more nuanced than presented by congress and i appreciate that by the
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president's speech and the briefings given to congress that there has been honesty about the complexity of the objectives and complexity of measuring outcomes. if that kind of honest talk continues, it will make it a lot easier for us to judge whether this is an engagement continuing, worth continued investment. i yield back. >> thank you very much, sir. now, we are fortunate to have before us the u.s. deputy secretary of state, mr. james steinberg who has just been named as we've heard dean of maxwell school of international affairs, the university professor for social science, international law and law at syracuse university. best wishes, mr. steinberg on your future endeavor, and you have a long and distinguished career, served as design of lynn done b. johnson affairs at university of texas and vice president and director of foreign policies studies at brookings institute, you served as deputy national security adviser to president clinton and held a number of positions at
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state department, including chief of staff, director of policy planning and deputy assistant secretary in the bureau of intelligence and research. you hold a b.a. from harvard, a j.d. from yale. i'd like thank you for your help in securing the freedom of three journalists who had a direct link to my area in south florida. thank you for taking my call and so many calls about their predicament. thank you for your help in making sure they got home safely. mr. steinberg, you are recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. thank all of you for the kind personal words people working on the winter wardrobe and looking forward to wonderful winters in syracuse, but the beautiful springs, summers and falls. i'm grateful for the opportunity to meet with the committee to update you on developments in libya and answer the important questions you have raised this morning and in other discussions. i won't cover them all in my opening statement but look forward to them in rest of our
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discussionses. i want to echo a sentiment, our gratitude toward the men and women serving the country so bravely and skillfully as they always do. in his speech monday night president obama laid out our goals and strategy for libya and the wider middle east. on tuesday, secretary clinton met with allies and partners in london, as well as representatives of the libyan transition national council, and yesterday she and secretary gates briefed members of the house and senate. i'm going to take this opportunity to underline their comments and continue the valuable exchange between the administration and congress that has been ongoing since after colonel gadhafi's regime ban to resort against violence against his own people. why we are part of this broad international effort. the united states has played a unique role as anchor of global security and advocate for human freedom. when our interests and values are at stake, we have a responsibility to act. this crisis began when the libyan people took to the
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streets in peaceful protests to demand their universal human rights and gadhafi's security forces responded with extreme violence. the u.n. security council acted by unanimously approving resolution 1970 on february 26th, which demand an end to violence and referred to the situation to the international criminal court while imposing a travel ban and assets freeze on the family of gadhafi and libyan government officials. rather than respond to the international community's demand for an end to violence, gadhafi's force continued their violence. with this imminent threat bearing down on them the peep of libya appealed to the world for help. gulf council and arab league called for establishment of no-fly zone. acting with nato, the arab world and african members of the security council, we passed resolution 1973 on march 17th which demanded an immediate cease-fire, including an end to the current attacks against civilians which said might constitute crimes against humanity, imposed a ban on all
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flights in the air flights and issued necessary measures to protect civilians and tighten sanctions on gadhafi's regime. as his troops pushed toward bengha benghazi, gadhafi defied the international community declaring we will have no mercy and no pity. based on his decade-long history of brutality we had little choice but to take him from his word. stopping a casualty of massive proportion became a question of hours not days. all of this has been accomplished consistent with obama's pledge to the american people our miller to role would be limited we would not put ground troops into libya, we would focus on our unique capabilities of the front end of the operation and transfer responsibility to our ally and partners. the president defined the military mission succinctly at the outset, in his words the international community made clear all attacks against
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civilians had to stop, gadhafi had to stop forces from advancing on benghazi, pulled them back from ajdabiya and establish water, electricity and gas supplies to all area. humanitarian assistance had to reach the people of libya. as we meet, the north atlantic council with coalition partners has taken on full responsibility for the united nations mandated action against libya that includes enforcing no-fly zone, policing an arms embargo in the mediterranean, carrying out targeted air strikes as part of u.n. mandate to take all necessary action to protect civilians. as nato assumes command and control of military operations, we're confident the coalition will keep pressure on gadhafi's remaining forces until he fully complies with resolution 1973. and we will support our allies and partners. we became involved in this effort because, as the president said monday, we have an important strategic interest in achieving this objective. a massacre could drive tens of
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thousands of additional refugees across libya's boarders, putting enormous strains on the peaceful yet fragile democratic transitions in egypt and tunisia. it would undercut democratic aspirations across the region and em bolding repesive leaders to believe violence is the best strategy to cling to power, undermine the credibility of the security council and ability to work with others to uphold peace and security. that's why the press concluded the failure to act in libya would carry too great a price. many have asked why libya, why not other caseses where we have seen forced use against civilians. as the president said, in this country, libya, at this particular hoemt moment we were faced with the pros second of violence on a horrific scale. we had an ability to stop the violence, a broad coalition prepared to join us, support of arab countries, and a plea from help from the libyan people themselves.
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we had the ability to stop gadhafi's forces in their tracks, without putting american troops on the ground. if i may, madam chairman, briefly, want to address three nonmilitary elements of our strategy. first, on the humanitarian front, working with nato, the eu, and the u.n. and other international organizations to get aid to people who need it. the united states government has provided 47 million to meet humanitarian needs. the second track is to continue ratcheting up pressure and further isolate colonel gadhafi and his soesh greaassociates. the contact group sent a message we must move forward with a democratic transsituation gadhafi has lost legitimacy to lead and must go. president obama has been equally firm that our military operation has a narrowly defined mission that does not include regime change. if we tried to overthrow gadhafi by force the coalition could splinter it might require deploying u.s. troops on the ground, and could significantly increase the chances of civilian casualties. as the president said, we've
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been down this road before and we know potential for unexpected costs and unforeseen dangers. the approach we are pursuing in libya has succeeded before, as we saw in the balkans. our military intervention in kosovo was carefully focused on civilian protection. >> thank you, i think i'll get to your other points. >> just finish this last point? >> yes. >> i know that members are interested. because i want to remain us that though the operation, the military operation in kosovo ended with the end of the humanitarian crisis and the rit withdrawal of forces we kept pressure on. in one year from the time the military operation ended, milosevic was deposed and on his way to the hague. >> thank you, sir. last night the regimes of foreign intielligence chief defected. will the u.s. government question him and any other former regime member about the attack over lockerbie scotland, that killed hundreds of americans, americans including
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my constituent, victoria cummick are demanding answers, and this man has them. have any of these former officials been deposed by the department of justice, what is the plan going forward to get information for them about that attack? and if i could remain the secretary to please respond to the letter delivered to her by the families of pan am 103, including my constituent victoria cummick. >> thank you, madam chairman. secretary clinton has taken a strong interest in the pan am 103 victims. she has a deep commitment there. and as i think you know, and i -- the department of justice has a considerable interest in a number of these issues, because they're ongoing investigations, i'm not in a position to comment on them but the department of justice is actively involved in reviewing that and seeing whether there are actions that it needs to take. we take this decision by the libyan foreign minister very
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seriously. it is an indication some of the efforts we're making to put pressure on the regime can be successful. i think while we should not overstate the significance of this we should not also understate the fact someone who has a long association with the regime has seen that there's no future there. the british are beginning to question him. this is obviously a development of less than 24 hours, so i can't say more detail but we take the point that you've raised that it is something that we take as an obligation very seriously. >> thank you very much. mr. bermen is recognized. >> thank you very much, madam chairman. just because so many members raise this whole issue of constitutional authority, war powers authority, i want to take a little bit of my time to at least throw out my perspective on all of this. this is not the first time this issue is in front of us, and i'm
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sure congressman repoo rfrmt o rorhbacher remember grenada, ban ma, and i can cite 20 other instances where u.s. forces in conflict without any vote of congress, and in the early '70s, congress attempted to come to grips with that by pass and by overriding a president's veto the war powers act. and there is a tension here because no president has ever accepted the constitution alt of the powers ability but congress recognized there will be situations -- and this was a classic case of one -- where action had to be taken before congress could authorize that action. i don't think there was plenty
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of time, given the position the administration had and i think rightfully so that they were not going to unilaterally impose a no-fly zone. this was going to be a coalition effort or it wasn't going to be and it was going to be sanctioned by the security council or it wasn't going to be. so so far the president has complied, not in his words pursuant to the war powers ability, but consistent to the war powers ability with what he's supposed to do with congress. the test will really come 60 days from the date this started, the conflict started, when if there was no authorization for the use of force in this particular conflict. and what the president does then, i don't know, because once again new york president's accepted the constraints imposed by the war powers ability and
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there's never been an ability to litigate it because no court will give standing to the congressional branch of government and the executive. so let's put this in a historical context when we start leveling charges. >> what the administration did in the role of congress by passing the war powers abilict accepted the premise there would be situations where this would happen, and under the provisions of section 5 of that act, the time will come, and on any given day the speaker of the house, leaders of the senate, could, could schedule for a vote an authorization or a denial of authorization for this if they chose to do so. so, let's look inward before we level too many charges outward. now in my last minute, let me ask you, one, if you could --
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given the position of the president world leaders that gadhafi must go, shouldn't we recognize the transitional national council as the french have done to help create the facts on the ground, that gadhafi is no longer libya's leader? would not such action be consistent with our statements and encourage other nations to do so as well further isolating gadhafi and sending a message to his supporters or those sitting on the fence that they should abandon him? and, finally if you have a chance, in that minute you'll have left, the misrata issue that i issued in my opening statement. >> thank you, mr. berman. i'm sure i'll have an opportunity to discuss the issues you raised in terms of the authorities in the course of the conversation. i'll go directly to your questions. first, with respect to recognizing the transitional national council, i think we have deepened our engagement with them.
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we've had a great deal of contact with them. we're in the process of sending a special representative to meet with them in eastern libya. we want to be supportive of the efforts of those trying to achieve democracy there. at the same time we need to understand better about who they are, what their aspirations about. we welcome the statements they made in the last couple of days both making commitments to democracy and the strong condemnation they made and disassociation without al qaeda that they made yesterday, which is a positive sign. but before we move forward a formal recognition, it's important for us to have a better understanding of their goals, objectives, representativeness and the like. on misrata, we've had some success in achieving some humanitarian access and it's an important objective. there have been some ships gotten in by sea but it's something we continue to pursue. >> thank you very much. acting with the consent of the ranking member, i would like to engage in a colloquy version of the authorize query. mr. deputy secretary, the committee would like to make a
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request of you on a different issue as part of the budget authorization process, the department has frequently provided the committee with draft legislative language for the changes in statutory authority that it is seeking as well as supporting explanations and information. i would like to ask the ranking member if he would join me on the record today in asking the department to convey any such requests to us, as soon as possible, so that we can give them adequate consideration as part of the state department authorization process. >> and the answers, i'm happy to join in that request. i think that is the committee's responsibility and this information is critical to being able to perform our function. >> thank you, mr. berman. mr. steinberg, can you commit to us that the department will at least let the committee know within the next week whether or not any requests for new or changes in the statutory authorities will be forthcoming,
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even if they have not been finalized? >> thank you, madam chairman. with that understanding, i'm not sure we will have all of the detail present but we certainly can give you a basic sense of what we will be looking for. >> that will be so helpful. thank you steinberg, mr. berman. i turn to mr. smith of new jersey. >> thank you very much, madam chair. thank you, deputy steinberg, for your testimony. i agree, no ground troops but, frankly why tell gadhafi? secondly, when first initiated military action, did we know who the rebels were and their plans for a post-gadhafi libya? especially as it relates to human rights, rule of law, and democracy? third, are the rebel fighters defined as civilians in the relevant u.n. security council resolutions authorization of force? how is bad weather affecting the ability to deploy our air power? and finally, given the fact that
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gadhafi has engaged in international terrorism, obviously, we all know how horrific the consequences of that has been, how is his current ability, what is his current ability to strike at our interests outside of libya? doesn't his ability to use asymmetric means to hit back at us increase the longer he remains in power? >> thank you mr. smith, for those very good questions. first on the no ground troops issue i understand your point. having grappled with this issue in the context of kosovo a decade ago i appreciate the point behind this that. i think this is a slightly different set of circumstances, in part, because of the very strong conviction of our partners in the arab league and the neighbors about the risks associated with having u.s. forces on the ground there. i think it's very important that, as part of our overall strategy, that we have tried to make clear this is a humanitarian invention, thoses one that has broad support and this is not somehow an outset of outsiders. understanding that normally we don't like to preclude these
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things, i think there's a compelling case in this one instance, and i think it has broad support among the american people, i think we could make the case, while it may not be generally the right way to go in this case it was justified. >> the secretary would yield on that, so nothing would preclude in our force or some other hybrid force, au, whatever it might be, from going? >> i think that the -- there's language in the security council resolution that talks about on passion forces and one could have a discussion about what that constitutes. but i think that at least our decision is based on our national policy decision. in terms of knowing who they are, i think it's important to understand that we did not intervene explicitly on the side of the transnational council. we intervened to prevent this humanitarian catastrophe. as part of the broader strategy we want to see an inclusive democratic transition take place and hopeful that the transnational council can be the core of something that leads to that broader group. i think the council itself would
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recognize it doesn't fully represent all of the people of libya and if we are going to move forward it's going to be more inclusive. we have been concerned about the human rights, your long commitment to that. that's one of the reasons we engage with them and encouraged about the statements they issued monday in london and then yesterday, both with respect to their commitment on democratic transformation, inclusiveness and respect for human rights and their strong condemnation of terrorism in general, and their distancing themselves from any association with al qaeda. these are obviously important commitments. we have make sure they're being honored in the fact as well as words. as several of you have said, the more we engage with them, the more influence we're likely to have. that's one of the reasons why it is important that we engage. as i mentioned come onmcongress, we have deepened our engagement with them, including sending a representative on the ground. on bad weather in the military
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operations, i've long since learned i prefer to defer to military colleagues on that except to say operations do continue. i did check in before we came and the operations, even as we move forward with the transition, that these efforts are under way. >> on the issue of the terrorism? and his ability to strike? >> yes. obviously, it's something that we're concerned. we know the past record. one cannot distribute that. this is one of the reasons why it's important for the transition to take place and why we believe that gadhafi should go. >> just finally, i remember reading the book, the art of war, he made a powerful statement, many, one let your plans be dark and as inpenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunder bolt. when the president said all options are on the table, obviously the intelligence committees and key members of congress need to know, and i think there's no support for ground troops. i certainly doesn't support it, but again telling gadhafi may unwittingly, and i mean that,
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convey to him that he has other options and he's not as at risk as he otherwise might be. just going forward i would hope the key members of congress, especially the intelligence committee and the leadership, be apprised. but for a short periods of time, some ambiguity might be helpful to ensure his demise. >> thank you, mr. smith. mr. ackerman, the ranking member of the subcommittee on the middle east and south asia is recognized. >> thank you, madam chair. i find it interesting that we're in favor of killing gadhafi but we don't want to be there when we kill him. i continue to be troubled, as i listen to some of our colleagues, both in this room and outside of the room. and i welcome some of our friends to the newly found, newly discovered by them, question of the war power act.
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it's an interesting piece of work. i wonder where those questions were, and to be clear i supported my president when we went to war in iraq. but where were those questions from some of our friends who newly discovered the constitution about that war? where were the statements about the clarity of the mission when we engaged in that? where were the demand for the end game? eight year into that war, over eight days, and no then and for eight years demanded to know what the end game was. and it's interesting, eight days, eight days, into the action in libya, they're making demands where's the end game. more people died in iraq in the past couple of weeks than in libya. and yet, the questions are asked, under this president's action, than they were during any previous president that i can remember.
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the war powers act is vague. it doesn't answer all of the questions. war doesn't answer all of the questions when you start it. you don't know the answer to any of the questions until it's over. sometimes you don't know when it's over. nobody's tested the war powers act. the constitution aelt ality is argued and still in the courts and deliberately so. sometimes we have to understand the laws are written with deliberate ambiguity so we have flexibility to act in situations we can't fully understand when things begin. maybe we need a different definition of war. i don't know. is it a war when you're fighting on behalf of the people of a country and against its leader, when you're not against the country, when you don't want to defeat a country, when you don't
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want to defeat its people but you want to help them liberate themselves from a corrupt and brutal and dictatorial leadership? is that a war? was france at war with england when so many there decided that their government's policy and its citizens would be support inof the american revolutionaries instead of the oppressive king? i think not. but if you think further about it, you know if a bomb dropped by a foreign government falls on your house, is it a war or just an intervention? maybe we don't want to define war. maybe we're not in one. but we have to give these things some thought as we think about the policy. and why libya? a lot of my friends thoughtfully asked the question, why of all of the countries involved in the
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region are we going to get involved in every single one of them? but you know, if you're approached on the street by somebody asking you for a few cents and has their hand out and tells you their story and they're in need, and you're trying to figure out whether or not to reach in your pocket and help or not, because there are so many beggars out there to help, but suddenly all of the street people say to you, help that one, maybe you have to take a look at that. and this is the first time that i can think of when not just one arab nation, but the entire arab league, which seems to be in a bit of difficulty on every individual basis says to you, help that one. maybe there's cause for the exceptionalism that the president has indicated here. so i -- i want to thank him, and
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you, and the administration for taking the actions that they're taking. i mean this dictator in that country, who has threatened no pity and only brutality to those who oppose him -- we've heard that before -- had only roosevelt, the outset of -- during world war ii stepped up to the plate with the moral clarity and intervened when another dictator was annihilating people by the thousands and millions, maybe a million or millions of innocent people would not have been slaughtered. >> thank you mr. ackerman. mr. berman? >> first of all, in answer to my good colleague, good friend mr. ackerman, congress approved going into iraq before we went into iraq. now, let me read what the war
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powers act says. the president's power, as commander in chief to introduce u.s. forces into hostilities or imminent hostilities can only be exercised pursuant to, one, a declaration of war, two, specific statutory authorization, or three, a national emergency created by an attack on the united states or its forces. it requires the president in every possible instance to consult with congress before introducing american armed forces into hostilities or imminent hostilities unless there has been a declaration of war or other specific congressional authorization. none of that happened. and yet we're spending hundreds of millions of dollars, and probably billions of dollars, involved in this conflict. and my concern is -- and i hope you'll answer this, mr. secretary -- why are we not in the ivory coast? thousands of people are being killed every day by a lead who was thrown out of office and
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won't leave. because there was a democracy move there and he's still there. and he's killing people every single day. now why is that not as important as what's going on in libya? and i'd like to know, this has been brought up a couple of times, how many of these citizen soldiers fighting against gadhafi, how many are people who are tied in with terrorist organizations that killed americans in iraq and afghanistan, and do we know who they are? do we have any idea? the secretary of state, when asked this question a couple of days ago said, well, we don't know all of the players. we're look into it. it's a heck of a situation when we go into a conflict and we don't know who we're supporting. i mean, this -- this could be the muslim brotherhood, it could be al qaeda, it could be taliban, it could be a combination of all three, and we really don't know. we haven't decided whether or not we're going to give arms to
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these people. will we be arming people who do to the have our interests at stake in the whole northern tier of africa, in the middle east, the persian gulf, the suez canal, the straits of hormuz, the gulf, all of that is up in an uproar right now. how far to we go in why isn't the congress consulted in advance? the war powers act, in my opinion, is very, very clear on this. we talk about the arab league. saudi arabia gets so much money from us, it isn't even funny. and many of the other arab countries are well healed. why can't they pay for this? if they aren't paying for this, why not? if they are paying for it, how much are they kicking in or is the american taxpayer on the hook for all of it along with some nato allies? and one of the things that concern me, since we're going it try to be an septic about this and make sure we don't kill civilians, we're just after bad guys, if gadhafi's got cole of
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cities and moving into cities when clouds are overhead and can't impose the no-fly zone, weave got gadhafi's soldiers in among the civilians. how are you going to get them out? you're not going to get them out by dropping bombs on them without killing civilians. there's no question, civilians will be killed. what do we do? do we support boots on the ground? is france and britain and other of our nato allies go in there? and ultimately, will we go in there? all of these are questions that should have been looked into before we went into this conflict. you know there's a lot of places we can go to war if we want to, but we've got a war in afghanistan, we finished in iraq, that's still problematic, on a lot of people's minds, and we don't have money to do all of these things. we have a $14 trillion national debt, we're sinking in red ink. we're $1.4 trillion in the debt this year. we can't reach an agreement with the senate right now on cutting spending of $61 billion and now
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seeing -- i see there's a compromise of $33 billion and we've got $1.4 trillion deficit this year. this country is in big trouble and we don't need to buy more trouble by getting into a conflict that isn't necessary and in our national frp. i don't see libya in our national interest. obviously we want to protect civilians and people being killed, innocent civilians, how do you pick and choose? why aren't we in places like the ivory coast or syria or elsewhere? these are questions that need to be answered and should have been answered before we went into this, and congress should have been consulted. the war powers act is very clear on this. >> thank you very much mr. burton. mr. payne, ranking member and subcommittee on africa, global health and human rights. >> thank you very much. as i indicated before, i commend the president for waiting until there could be a consensus with
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the europeans and for the arab league for the first time to ask the west to intervene, i think, is something that we keep losing the importance on the -- the importance of that. just about gadhafi in general, you know, i think that his intimidation of many african leaders over the years have kept them quiet. as a matter of fact, though, if you want to put his hand on d dastardly group, charles taylor went into sierra leone and got together with the group, the ruf, who are chopping off hands of women and children to get the blood diamonds and so charles taylor is a direct result of gadhafi. so i'm not so sure that african leaders really have that much of a real appreciation for gadhafi.
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they talk about the fact that we do not know who the persons are. i met with former ambassador of libya, and he gave me the napes of the 27 people who were in the provisional government at that time who are leading the discussions for libya. so, the governing group is not a total mystery. many people who have been imprisoned by gadhafi in the past are a part of the group. all of a sudden, al qaeda comes up. i'm not so sure that al qaeda isser in libya but you throw that up and that sends a red flag up to say that we need to be careful. i do think we need to be careful but there will be somebody on the ground to combat gadhafi's troops. and it's going to have to be libyans. i think if they're trained and are equipped, they had the will to fight because they are
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fighting for their freedom that they have been suppressed for decades and decades. so i think that the liberation persons will really have an opportunity because i also believe that there will be deflections from the military of libya. i have a question, though, about the behavior of some of the liberation people as it relates to subta sa hasaharan africans. it's been alleged there were mercenaries forcibly brought into libya gi gadhafi. i question how many will there are because gadhafi's forces are strong enough without sort of ragtag group of mercenaries from subsaharan africa. however, the liberation people have taken out on black africans who are workers in libya and have threatened them and have
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brutalized some of them, some of them are afraid to go to the hospital because they think they might get killed in the hospital. so i wonder whether our government is looking into the liberation people's so-called good guys who are taking out on black workers in libya and also actually blacks who live in libya who are libyans because of the rumor about the mercenaries that are there. could you -- do you have any light on that? if we could have any message to these -- to the rebel groups that we should say that we don't think that this is right. >> thank you, congressman payne. we are aware of reports that along the leines you've discussed. in general we would not want to see that happen, we made clear to the transition national council we would be concerned
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about that and they need to do a very good job of demonstrating they're not like gadhafi and they provide human rights and decent treatment to all people involved. broadly we have been concerned about the possibility that gadhafi would seek to use mercenaries. again, conflicting reports of how many or how important it is, but we've been working with a number of countries in the region, particularly from africa to try to diswade them and discourage them from providing mercenaries. if i could, i would like to say a word about coat devoire ii. the u.n. security council passes a new resolution. we have been a leader in recognizing the president and working with the west african countries and the au to see that transition to move forward. unlike libya, however, we have not seen a call by the african regional organizations for military engagement. we have different tools for different circumstances but that does not mean we're not support inof the democratic transition. >> thank you so much.
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the chairman on submitty on oversight investigations is recognized. >> thank you very much. i apologize, i've been having to run back and forth between two hearings that are very significant. so if i cover a question that's already been asked, i apologize. let me get to the cost. i have several -- made several contacts with the transitional national council, and those revolutionaries who are trying to free themselves from the gadhafi tyranny. in fact, omar turby, right here, just returned from libya and has -- was meeting there with the transition. thank you, omar. and he assure me, as well as some of the other contacts that i have had, that the council has agreed that they will pay all of the cost of american operations in support of their efforts to
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free themselves from the gadhafi dictatorship. what is your understanding about that? >> congressman, i haven't heard anything specifically to that point, but we have had positive discussions about them about their support for what we're doing in trying to make this success for all of us. in general, we have taken the position that the assets that have been frozen are for the benefit of the libyan people. so were there to be a democratic transition that would be a decision. >> let's me ask you specifically, the administration does support, does it not, or maybe you can tell me they are not at this point supporting, the principle that if we are helping the people of libya free themselves from the gadhafi dictatorship, that they will pay -- repay us? >> i think we would welcome a representative government from libya taking that position. >> all right. the american people will also welcome that. and let us note that one of the things that tears at heart of the american people that is,
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when we get involved in things like this, quite often we feel that the country that we are helping or the people we are helping are not grateful to us, and i have -- whether it's omar or others who i have been talking to, it's clear people are struggle against gadhafi today in libya are grateful that the united states is playing a positive role toward their effort to free themselves. as i mentioned in my one minute opening statement, this is not unlike the reagan doctrine. we are not sending troops overseas to do fighting for other people who are trying to win their freedom. we ended the cold war during the reagan years and, i might add, did not have bipartisan support in many of these cases where we were supporting those elements that were fighting for their own freedom against communist tyranny. well, radical islam now threatens the peace of the
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world, and the freedom of people throughout the world, and i might add that this, by being involved with people who are fighting for their freedom, we are at least lessening the impact of radical islam if not offsetting it in important situations like this. maybe you could expand on that? >> thank you, congressman. first of all, thank you very much for your support. it's obviously very much appreciated. second, i think, as you said, i think there is a strong sentiment there are a real resonance among the libyan people. it's only anecdotal but all of us were touched by the way in which our two downed pilots were treated when they were supported and helped by the people who they were trying to help, and i think that's a real reflection of the recognition of what we're trying to do here. i think that, you know, as we go forward, this is an important set of principles and we have made clear, first, that we do expect, and look to the council and new representative government, to reject extremism,
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to reject terrorism, and the statement that the council made yesterday was a welcome and ex-police sweat clear statement. >> if we were not engaged, for my fellow colleague whose seem to be tryinging to suggest america shouldn't be engaged or engaged and nitpicking themselves in terms of finding things wrong with what the administration has done if we were engaged there wouldn't be no motive for those people who are on the ground to confront radical islam on site. right now they know if al qaeda or any of these other operative, who hate the west as much as they hate gadhafi, there would nobody reason to confront their influence if it wasn't for the united states they're helping. i hope that we understand we are, this is in our interest, as it always is in the interest of the american people to stand with those people who are struggling for freedom and a
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democratic government. however, it is not in our interest to send our troops all over the world. maybe you -- i'm sure this has been covered before, but maybe you could reassure me that we have no plans to send american combat troops -- and let me note, reagan built up our military forces, but rarely did he dispatch them into any type of combat zones around the world. instead we supported those people who were fighting for their own freedom. is this going to be the case with this sflags. >> -- with this administration? >> we have no plans or intention to put ground troops in libya. >> if you do, i will just note you will lose the support of many of white house are now supporting your efforts, if your plans include sending combat troops and putting them on the ground in libya. thank you very much.
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>> thank you. i would like to tell the members of our committee that the japanese ambassador to the u.s. is in the side room, if any of you would like to go and discuss the situation with the radiation leaks, the terrible humanitarian crisis that his country is undergoing and more than anything, he would like to thank the members of congress for the help that the u.s. has given to his beleaguered country. mr. sherman, the ranking member on the subcommittee on terror. nonproliferation and trade, is recognized. >> i want to pick up on mr mr. rohrbacher's comments. libyan assets used to pay the full cost, not the phony marginal cost of our operations
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and i know, mr. steinberg, you say that this money needs to be held for the benefit of the libyan people. first, i would think our actions are helping the libyan people and i see you nodding in agreement. and second, libya, normal times proeshg deu produces more oil per capita than any country you can find on the map without a magnifying glass. more oil per capita than saudi arabia. now, i know, if we were to seize those libyan assets and to the extent already expensed for the benefit of the libyan people, that that in foreign policy circles would be considered petty and presumptuous. but in america, it is simply outrageous that we are going to hold this money and use american taxpayer dollars to carry out this operation. i'd like you respond to that for
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the record, because i've got another series of questions. the rebels include some very good people but people who seem to be willing to embrace whatever help they can get, not only from us, but from al qaeda or terrorists as well. have we demanded that the libyan rebels apprehend, extradited, or at least cease all cooperation with any of the terrorists in their midst? >> congressman, as i mentioned earlier, we were very appreciative of the clear statement that the transnational and national council made yesterday. >> that's a clear statement. have they apprehended a single person? have they even announced that -- i mean, vague statements against terrorism are a dime a dozen, especially in english. have they ceased cooperation
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with the abdel hakim al sidi. >> we don't see signs of significant cooperation. >> okay. what you're saying there's some cooperation -- >> no, i'm not -- >> okay. is there -- what about al hacidi is he incorporated or commanding rebel forces or you don't care enough -- >> congressman, i think if we warn to get into the details we could have a further conversation in a closed session. what we can say publicly. >> i brought this up in the classified briefing yesterday and i got no answer and i'm sure if we do another classified briefing you'll give me no answer. >> but i think we share your concern. i think that it is important, and we have stressed this time and time again -- >> you're serving -- how do i explain to american servicemen from my district that there's -- that those with blood on their hands, american blood on their hands, are fighting in libya and
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we're risking their lives to defend those with american blood on their hands? how do i explain that to someone from my district? >> as i said earlier, our engagement there is in defense of the libyan people. it is not on behalf of an organization. >> one of the libyan people that we're defending is abdulhakim al hacid. we're risk lives of our airmen to defend that man. how do i explain that to someone from my district? >> i can agree with that characterization. we are depending civilians -- >> he is rebel commander in the durna area. i want to pick up on mr. berman's comments. i don't think your answer was all that specific. the war powers act is the law of the land. section 5 says that the administration cannot continue military action without a
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resolution for congress for more than 60 days. then if we do not pass such a resolution, there's a 30-day disengagement period. will this administration follow that law, yes or no, sir? >> congressman, in my future life i will be spending a lot of time with hypotheticals but i don't know what the situation will be. >> is it the position of the administration that that law's constitutional and binding on the administration or not? that isn't hypothetical. that is what is the position of the administration a law passed long ago. >> the position that is we have consulted with congress, we have notified congress. >> i'm asking about section 5 of the law, sir. >> the position of the administration that is the action that we took in this case, which is an action -- >> will you comply with section 5 or will you simply evade my question. >> it's not a question that can be answered in the abstract. the application of any provision applies only in -- >> there's nothing abstract here. you can't guarantee this mission will be over in 60 days.
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>> again, congressman, it's a question that cannot be answered in the abstract. there are certain constitutional power dshz. >> thank you mr. steinberg. thank you, as well, mr. short term. the chairman of the subcommittee on terrorism nonproliferation and trade mr. royce of california, is recognized at this time. >> thank you, madam chair. i want to get back to something that i mentioned in my opening statement, and that other members have mentioned here, and that's the cost. one of the reasons i want to get back to it, mr. secretary, is because you didn't mention it in your opening statement and that caught my attention. and in london this week, secretary clinton mentioned there was discussion about financial assistance to the transitional government, to the transitional council, i think, is the termology you used. what's envisioned in that sense? >> congressman, at this point
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the assistance we've given has been humanitarian assistance. we have given about $47 million in humanitarian assistance. on the military side, i know secretary gates is testifying this morning, and i would defer to him on what the military costs are. >> i have seen those figures. >> and in terms of going forward, this is a conversation that we are having with the transition national council in terms of what might be appropriate assistance. we made no commitment. we need to understand better and this is something we will continue to consult with you as the opportunity emerges. >> i appreciate that. but what steps is the administration prepared to take to facilitate access, you know, basically, to seize the $33 billion in assets that gadhafi has here that libya has here in the united states? >> congressman, under the security council resolution, the assets that we have frozen are frozen for the benefit of the libyan people. >> this is my concern, i mean, you're got two ways to do that.
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you could facilitate access to proceeds from new oil sales or you could access these assets but -- let me ask you another question along that line. we've got other coalition partners here. the arab league. what commitment have they made? and i say that because we're looking at a budget deficit of $1.6 trillion for this year. we're borrowing 42% of everything that we spend here in washington. this is why i was pushing early on for an alternative approach, jamming his communication system, which we didn't do at the time, so that gadhafi could not, could not, four weeks ago communicate with the troops when they were defecting rather than an expensive proposition. we've seen this before. i remember pushing, jamming and
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broadcasting in yugoslavia before the election. milosevic became na close by being defeated, had it gone through we could have affected the outcome. we could have jammed the broadcasting of taliban radio in afghanistan all of those year. we could have done our own broadcasting in with radio-free afghanistan. that legislation passed after masood was killed. there's a lack of understanding here in terms of cost effective ways to do diplomacy or to change governments, and there is a tendency to forget how to collect the check after we've left. if we don't get that set up front, it's not going to happen. and that's why, you know, could assets be used to repay the u.s. treasury for war costs? i guess that's the question. could they. >> i think -- let's plea answer two parts of your question first, because you did raise the jamming issue and i -- it seemed
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like we were avoiding that. what i can say in this session that is we are doing -- >> you're doing it now four weeks later. by the way, the former government started the bombing, started the broadcasting into yugoslavia, by the way the day of the bomb beeing. we started the broadcasting only after masood's death and the day before the bombing. we wait too late. there is a time which taken, you know, at the brink, leads to a decisive move, especially when talking about jamming your opposition when his generals are defecting. i just -- the defense secretary has said the military operations have been planned. i read this in the paper, on the fly. on the fly. i hope this cost question isn't being dealt with the same way because, again, that's how you get stuck with the check. and i haven't got a defenseti defensetivandefensetiv definiti
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answer here that commits to we will not get stuck. >> i very much take your point about the fact that while some countries are contributing by providing planes or other kinds of support, there is an opportunity for other countries that are not doing that to provide financial support. we're conscious of that and very much engaged with other countries to make sure they find a way to support. >> i think i'm going to come back with legislation on this. i don't have a definitive answer yet. i'll tuk mr. sherman on that front. thank you. >> good point. mr. meeks, ranking member on the subcommittee on europe and ur rash shah is recognized. >> i heard iraq was going to pay for everything we did western weenw we entered that war. amazing. let me say that, first of all, as i started out in my opening statement, the oceans don't
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protect, talking about american interests, and we want to be safe, let us be safe if we don't have any allies. how can we be safe if we don't have anyone else working with us. when we were attacked, a number of other alleys were not attacked. we asked them to come with us afghanistan and iraq. they cooperated with us. they're a number of our allies now who said, we have a problem. we're supposed to be a team. we're a nato unit, we need your help now. you have unique capabilities. so we need your help. we want you to be a part of this. we didn't just go running into some place. it's not justify the united states saying -- the united states saying it's my way or the highway because the last time we did that when somebody didn't agree with us, when we wanted to come in, we cot freedom fries in the capitol. here's the president who is
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being deliberate making sure we have our allies with us so that, as we fight al qaeda, and we fight terrorism, we have people because we know we need their intelligence, their help, their moving because it's a threat to all of us. it's a common threat. so we working together. libya happens to be the country that our allies say we need to work together on just as we did as we asked them. so it seems to me to make sense that it helps the american people, and we all share in the cost, share in what our particular roles are. how dare we say, just united states, go on your own again, forget our allies, forget what they need, forget working with them, forget considering anything that they said, that's unilateralism. that will make the american people unsafe. that's exactly what the terrorists want. they want to be able to isolate us and to say that we are just doing whatever we want, irrespective of everyone else.
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i'm dlad thglad that this presi hasn't done that and is working collectively with everyone else. let me give you the opportunity, you were trying in your opening statement and the first question ehad on my mind to talk about kosovo and what took place there and now, i know there's no exact situations, what the differences, and i was wondering what lessons could we have learned or did we learn from kosovo that we could apply now to make sure we get rid of a guy and move on about having some kind of groundwork for political options in libya and having something politically done? can you tell us about that. >> thank you, congressman. as you correctly guessed, that's what i was going to go on to say if i had a bit more time. i know how pressed we are for time. as you say, no situations are identical but there are important similarities between the situation in kosovo because we did intervene there.
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it was done with nato. it demonstrated our commitment to work with our allies in a situation. it was also a case in which we defined the military mission, to stop the ethnic cleansing, stop the humanitarian crisis caused by milosevic attacks on the citizens of kosovo but stopped military operation when the humanitarian goal was achieved and the forces were withdrawn. but that didn't mean we said we're going to leave milosevic in place and don't care what happens. we understood the risk of his continued presence there we continue the sanctions and other forms of pressure, and working with the democratic forces in serbia, we led, one year late, didn't happen overnight, one year later he was ousted from power. i think this idea we can have a different set of objectives for the military dimension and the broader dimension is one validated. it is a powerful lesson that the strategy can work and that's what we're trying to pursue here. as you also said i hoped so tsa a word about our attempt to build long-term democracy in
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libya. it is important as this evolves it evolves beyond the individuals take on that role to be inclusive, broad based, human rights, rejection of extremism and violence that we all believe in, and that's part of the reason we do engage with the council to make clear that we look forward to that kind of success but it has to be a broad-based one and one consistent with our princele. wha what we've seen through the middle east we've have a chance of succeeding and we are planning for it now. it's something we understand, we can't wait until the moment arises but that's part of the purpose of our engagement with both folks on the council and others who are interested in the >> thank you, mr. steinberg. >> i want to thank the deputy for your service to your
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country. i to wish you legal in your next employ. i want to give you the opportunity to answer a couple of questions. i think you heard in my opening statement, i think it's important we say we are at war in libya. while i'm troubled about vars aspects of how we began this conflict, i will never jeopardize support for our troops. and i will always attempt to maintain the level of deference and respect that is due and owing to the commander and chief and executive in matters of war. but i want to say -- this sets up my question. i don't believe the president has the unilateral authority to take america to war without congressional approval where our safety or vital national interests are not directly implicated. my first question, if you want to scribble it, because i'll
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give you three. you can pick whichever ones. the first is, how was the safety of the people of the united states of america or our vital national interests implicated in a way that justified the president bypassing the ordinary deliberation and consideration and authorization of the congress in one form or another? secondly qualify i also said, i think history teaches that the wisest course of action is not limited war. and that america has succeeded throughout our history when we have chosen to send our most precious heros and our treasure into combat. if we made the decision, when you go to war, you go to war to win. my next question is what is the objective here? i hear there is a political
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objective we hope moammar gadhafi goes. that's not the military objective. the second is how do we define victory? thirdly, the president said we should not repeat the mistakes of iraq. we've gone down that road before. he doesn't want the mission to involve regime change. i stipulate this is a very different road than iraq. we had a clear college bipartisan approval. we had careful military preparation. then we got international support. through trial and sacrifice of blood and treasure, we prevail. here we have no congressional approval. military preparation, as was suggested, has been done, quote, on the fly. we have mixed international support. we're involved in an aerial bombardment campaign on the
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ground. why shouldn't the congress take up and debate and amend and consider and vote on a resolution authorizing the use of force in this case? and specifically lay out what the objectives and the mission and the goal of the american people is in libya? >> congressman, let me start with the last. we welcome members of the congress here. members of both party authorized the use of force when it's limited in scope and due raising. we have consulted closely with congress. we would welcome your support. in terms of the interest, my opening statement, i quoted the president. i think it is a clear statement. i could repeat it, but i want to spend the time here. >> if i could interrupt. i respect your background and
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experience on this. when president reagan made the decision to launch missiles into the -- moammar ga ddhafgadhafi' compound, did that go on for more than a day? >> when the involvement is limited in scope and duration, they have the congressional authority to do it. >> that instance was a day. it was one launch, one attack. and we've been at had this in libya now with over 100 cruise missiles and air support and ground bombardment and talking about equipment and maybe more for several weeks. >> right. i think what's distinctive about this -- and there have been a number of instances. i mentioned libya because you it's not the first time we have engaged in libya. we have significantly moved forward. the movement to nato control is a reflection of that.
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the president of conscious of that. as you said, it's important we define the mission. as i was discussing earlier with congressman meeks, we have examples where we have used limited force for humanitarian mission and succeededed in those. >> mr. secretary, thank you for being here. i'm one who based on the international framework that was created of calls from the arab league and u.n. security council for limited scope, no fly zone, was cautiously supportive of the president's actions mr. that respect. i must say it is not often i myse
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find myself on common ground with mr. burton. you're about to go into academia. tell me what, if anything, with respect to the war powers act do you believe is triggered in this particular intervention? >> congressman, as i said before, this president and all presidents read the war power resolution consistent with their constitutional authority. although i am a lawyer by training, i'm mot here to represent the legal opinion of the administration. i would say that we consulted with congress and provided the notification that's consistent with the war powers act, within 48 hours after the beginning of hostility. we're following the practice that administrations in the past
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have. >> do you believe that pursuant to the war powers act some act of authorization is required from this congress? >> i think, congressman, when the president engages in the use of military forces where the action is limited in scope and duration, he has authored under the constitution to do that. having said that, we are mindful of the war powers resolution and have acted consistent with it. >> in previous no fly zones, particularly if iraq, in the north and subsequently in the south, what, if any -- what provisions of the war powers act did presidents at that time follow? did they also follow the reporting rule? >> i'm not here as a justified witness, but the position of previous administrations of both parties is that they have had the practice of acting
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consistently with the war powers act while reserving the authorities they saw you with the president. >> would you refresh my memory? the authority in the constitution you cite for the president to go into libya or anywhere else for that matter is what again? >> his authority as commander in chief. >> from your point of view, the commander in chief denovo is free to command roopz troops as he sees fit? >> i'm here as a lawyer, not a client. but the use of military force is limited mr. scope and duration. the president has certain powers under the constitution. but they are defined. and the test is when the action is limited in scope and duration. >> i understand. i guess respectfully i'm pretty strict constructist with respect on to war powers. the constitution couldn't be clearer that the war powers contained in the constitution
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are are exclusively and entirely with the congress of the united states. >> you are a good lawyer, congressman. you know the authority to declare war is with congress. that's the matter we're discussing. >> as the executive branch claims inherent powers, if we have under the constitution clear as a bell, the power to declare war. it couldn't be clearer there are inherent powers from that as well. including the decision in advance whether or not to employee u.s. military personnel. i don't agree with your interpretation of the commander in chief powers. he gets to be commander in chief after we decide whether or not troops are to be deployed. but that's a fight tissue. >> it's a long-standing conversation that executive branches have had. >> the last president to recognize that was franklin roosevelt. not a bad president. what if anything are we going to do with the frozen assets ta turned out to be much bigger
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than we thought of libya? and should we use any to finance this endeavor? >> this is something i know a number have asked. the asetsz were frozen for the benefit of libyan people. i think it's a conversation we'll have with the existing transnational counsel to find a good resolution that reflects the way there are many ways that could be done for the benefit of the libyan people. we're having an ongoing conversation. no decisions have been maeld. >> ms. berkle, you're recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. thank you for being here it this morning, mr. steinberg. i want to start out my questions with pan-am 103 and what our chairwoman mentioned.
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i'm sure you're aware 38 students from sir cute university were on that flight. we had an opportunity to interview secretary of state hillary clinton. i asked her, what will this administration do to make sure we are collecting evidence and prosecute the parties responsible? and i would encourage you, strongly encourage you and this administration to pursue that. there are so many families waiting for closure. they have not had the one final piece put into place. on their behalf, we implore this administration. we have a good opportunity with the deflection of the foreign minister yesterday to take this this opportunity to ask questions and find out so we can prosecute mr. gadhafi you for this heinous crime. >> i know you know how strongly secretary clinton feels about this too. it's something we intend to pursue.
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>> beyond that, i want to talk you a little bit. would've heard so much about ground troops. we're not -- you've nenmentione we're not going to pursue that. you mentioned occupation forces but didn't elaborate on that. can you take that phrase of u.n. resolution and expand for us what that means? and whether or not because we've just seen -- we witnessed this administration unilaterally applying authority for the missiles. now whether or not any further steps would be required by this administration to commit ground troops. if not, i'd like to hear your thoughts on that. >> obviously, for us, the issue of precisely what would constitute an occupation force doesn't rise. the president has made a policy
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decision. he doesn't intend to send ground troops. this things change -- i think the president accounted not have been clearer about it. that's something we would welcome a conversation with congress about. i find it very difficult to imagine in giving the strong position the president has taken, that issue is likely to arise. >> what does the u.n. resolution call for with regard to this occupation forces? >> it does not authorize an occupation force. all necessary means to help the civilians but does not occupy rn grant the use to use military force. >> you think the concern of the congress is that the policies have been so vague in our mission and our goal. what are we doing there? what is the end game that we were concerned that now
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committing ground troops there, it's not brought to the congress and not brought to the american people. and i think that that is the concern here. that this whole operation escalates. we're in this position without congress's extent and the consent of the american people, as my colleague, mr. pens mentioned, it was a unilateral authority ta got us into this. how do we prevent any further commitment of troops from our country? >> i'd say first -- and i haven't mentioned this before. we have had -- not only have we had exfencive conversations -- the president could not have been clearer about ground troops. what you're seeing is already a reduction in our military activities there. as we move forward with this it transition, the united states is stepping back from the front
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line. we are focusing on providing support on things like intelligence and those kinds of things. i think we have -- the president lived up to his commitment to the american people and the congress this is a limited effort. we are reducing our scope. we're moving in the other direction, which is to reduce the u.s. military role here. >> can you assure this congress that the u.s. would not commit ground troops without having a conversation with the congress? >> at this point, i could only say that the president has made clear to us he has no intention of doing that. >> thanks for being here this morning. >> thank you to both. ms. bass of california is recognized. >> thank you very much, madam chair. first of all, i wanted to congratulate you on your new role. i wanted to start my comments by commending the obama administration by making
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critical decisions which i believe prevented a massacre in libya. two questions. first, beginning with nato. as it's often said given the significant role we play in nato, what real difference did it make that we've pulled away and turned over the command to nato? i wanted to know if you would specifically distinguish the role of the united states versus the role of the other nations that are mr. nato? then my second question. you were asked earlier about building a democratic government in post gadhafi libya. i wanted to know if you would expand on that. >> the perspective of transition from u.s. to nato control means we are able to step back and the protection of civilians to other forces, both nato and other
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civilian forces. we will focus on support 50s and reconnoissance and the like. we are definitely playing a less front line role in terms of the operational military activities. at the same time, we get the benefit of the well established, well oiled machine that can conduct effective military activity. we can be sure our forces are under military command. ultimately all the forces are under an american admiral. we have an opportunity to play less of anna operational role but still have the benefits of a disciplined nato command in control. in terms of the transition can of this is enormously important to us. while we are working with the transition counsel and appreciate the efforts they've made to step up to provide some loirch and some coherence here, ultimately, this has to be broadened. as we move forward and have an opportunity to have a real democratic transition, we need
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to make sure it's broad based and the different voices are represented and it's consistent can the basic principles. and the same things we're looking for in touu nisia and throughout the middle east. their willingness to articulate principles. we need to milwaukee sure this is not just paper declarations by them but that they carry it out. we're beginning to work with the counsel and voices outside of libya and ngos to begin the process so we're ready to go when that process comes. >> thank you very much. mr. duncan of south carolina. >> let me just remind the
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panelists we are still at war against terror. military strategist sun-soo said if you know yourself and your enemy, you need not fear the outcome of a hundred battles. in operation in libya, do we know who makes up the rebel option? how do we know they're not worse for america's national security interests than gadhafi? >> the top al qaeda propagandist said this. the mujahadine are going through
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an upswing. this is according the new york times, march 30th. global muslim brotherhood leader usef gadari gave a sermon in which he called arab leaders to recognize the council to confront the terroristic regime in tripoli. do we honestly know who makes up the rebel opposition? >> haunk, congressman. i think we can had hear these claims by others. but the truth is what we've seen throughout the region is that these movements, whether in egypt and tunisia are not driven by al qaeda. they may want to claim it because they're behind the curve. i think they're trying to catch up because they don't have the
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support. what we've heard is they're not looking to al qaeda. they've rejected al qaeda. they issued a very strong statement the other day. i would take these statements as a sign of groups that desperatelyme want to be seen. mathematic, our values, our principles are on the ascendency. when you read the words, those are words that would resonate for americans and people who believe in freedom and democracy. i don't take their statement as reflect they own these movements. it's precisely because we are engaging and supporting these movements they have a future. they look to us and the west as being their partners and being on their side. we have to be attentive and alert. we know that al qaeda has had a presence in libya in the past. we want to make sure it doesn't reestablish there. what we've seen so far is this is not a significant factor perform this is not something that the people we're engaging
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with seem to want. we need to let the rhetoric of others dissuade us. >> i saw on the news that the cia have gone into libya today. the president said on monday night in libya we are faced with the prospect of violence on a huge scale and had the unique opportunity to stop that violence. did we? you mentioned humanitarian intervention. humanitarian intervention is the president's justification for action. tell me where we have not invaded uganda. if it had is the obama doctrine, the united states will intervene for humanitarian reasons. folks, tell me why we haven't invaded chad, baran, the ivory
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coast, sudan. other areas where we have seen humanitarian needs and civilian populations have been attacked by their government, decimated in local instances. is that what the obama administration is trying to spread, that we're going to send it to every corner of the world where there's humanitarian needs? that's a rhetorical question as well. i'm concerned we may be setting a precedence we may not be able to live up to. i'm concerned that this it administration talked the u.n., nato and the arab league, prior on to talking to this congress. i applaud him for coming yesterday, the administration coming yesterday to bring us up
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to speed. madam chairman, i wish he would have informed us ahead of time. >> mr. sislynni. >> i want to begin by thanking and acknowledging the administration for its thoughtful deliberation and decision-making in a very difficult set of is circumstance s i want to commend secretary clinton and other for handle this situation for libya. on the one hand we accept the assertions of our president. and also we have a strategic interest in preventing instability in this world, as emerging democracies in tunisia and libya are being born.
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we are in difficult and challenging financial times. i hope that part of the conversation with this this emerging political leadership in a post gadhafi libya will embrace the notion of accepting financial responsibility for this work. both as a way to compensate american taxpayers but as a real indication of the action of a responsible government. you know you've heard that from the committee loudly and clearly. what is your sense of what is the most gadhafi leadership like? are they likely to embrace that view of the world of some responsibility is? i agree with you, this money belongs to the libyan people. it would be a sign they accept responsibility for the costs they're bearing. are there religious elements to this it transnational council? is it likely to form the basis of a new political leadership in a post gadhafi libya?
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i know we are deepening our engagement with them. if you could share with us what you know about that political leadershipship looks like. and whether the principles the support for a constitutional and democratic civil state and respect for human rights and guarantee the equal rights and opportunities for all citizens, whether they're lukely to have the opportunity to have the capacity for those citizens. >> we can't know for certain. obviously, libya is a country that sufyouered a tremendous destruction of the social infrastructure over four years. it will be a struggle for them to build the community and democracy that's more than just anna election but civil society has protection of human rights. that's why we need to be part of this and help shape it and support these voices that are consistent with our values. our engagement and support
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increases the likelihood we'll have this support. if i could make a little commercial here. i think it's important as you consider your budget deliberations to make sure we have the resources to support ngos and the rule of law and all those forces that will allow us to be an effective force going forward. >> is there a historical precedent for our having persuaded someone we helped in this way to bear some of the costs? is that part of conversations that are currently under way with the transnational council? you i assume that has come up. >> it's early days yet. you've heard from other members they've heard that. i think what we are now focused on is what needs to be done to help them support. if the outcome is that they see that as something they would choose to do -- part of the reason we've been trying to be
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careful is because we don't want to be seen as telling them what's best for them. on the other end, encouraging them to do the right thing. i certainly understand the sentiments that have been expressed here. >> ms. schmidt of ohio. >> it is the opening day of the reds today. i'm walking my red scarf. i, like most americans, am concerned about in endeavor. concerned for a couple of reasons. the first is if we don't take gadhafi out, my fear is that he will be emboldened in the region and not just emboldened but what he will do to the rebels, he said he will go after them and massacre them. and i truly believe he will. here's the problem i have with the strategy. we're only going to do an air strike. an air strike clearly is not
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enough. gadhafi is smart enough to allow us to strike and let the rebels think they're going to take over a village or their area. then he comes in and gets them. because the problem with the rebels are two fold. they don't have any training and they don't have real weapons to combat gadhafi's weapons. my concern is if it there's an effort to get them training and an effort to get them weapons, we have the security that the rebels will be better than gadhafi. or will theya be worse? the devil you know is sometimes better than the devil you don't know. these are legitimate concerns i have. i do believe americans have. that's my first question. >> haunk, congresswoman. i think those are very good and serious questions. i would say first on the issue of getting ga daf ydhafi out, i we share your view. i don't think it would be a stable or successful outcome for
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gadhafi to stay. talking about kosovo, we demonstrated in the past you can have a military operation designed to blunt the humanitarian catastrophe. ongoing political strategy that can lead to the leader going. what happened in kosovo was a pattern we hope will happen here. we think we have the same tools and opportunity to do that. with respect to support for the opposition, i think you've raised the right questions. we believe under the second security council resolution, that is an option that is available to provide support for the option. we want to make sure it would serve the broader interests in creating a democratic stable libya. those are the questions we're discussing with ourselves and with others. that's something we have not yet made a decision about. >> you a couple of follow-up questions. while you might want to compare this to kosovo, there are
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different parts of the world. while one strategy might work in one area of the world, it may not work based on a variety of issues, including the terrain, culture, environment, the neighborhood and the other. so i wouldn't be so comfortable to compare this to the similar situation over 15 years ago in kosovo. but having said that, the second concern ta i have that i think a lot of americans have is that we chose libya. clearly as is some other folks suggested on this panel, why libya? why do we go after gadhafi for the inhumanity he had has when you have folks in darfur that have been suffering for almost a decade and we've been little to nothing for those folks. i'm surprised we put all of our eggs in this basket when there are other troubled spots around
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the world that might need the same human compassion. >> the president addressed that in his speech. i had an opportunity earlier to talk about that as well. i think we've made very clear that libya is a very specific case. it's not simply the humanitarian dimension. the instability in libya threatened the democratic transitions taking place. i don't think anybody would dispute we have a tremendous interest. second, we have a situation where we had the appeal of the arab league. which is not the case with some of the other humanitarian situations. so each case has to be taken on its own terms. we have's deep engagement. on darfur, we are deeply involved. we helped broker the comprehensive agreement. we're involved in trying to support that in darfur.
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we passed a new security council resolution. each situation has to be dealt with both in terms of the national interest and the tools available. >> my final comment is, if we're going after the bear in the woods and you strike the bear. you better take the bear out because the bear will take you out. if we want stability in this region, gadhafi will have to go. if gadhafi remains, the region is not going to be more stable but less stable. thank you very much. >> thank you, mr. steinberg, for excellent testimony. we look forward to continuing this it conversation on such an important issue. with that, the committee has now adjourned. thank you. [inaudible conversations]
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>> c-span2, one of c-span's public affairs offerings. week days, live coverage of the senate, and weekends, booktv. 48 hours of the latest nonfiction authors and books. connect with us on twit wither, facebook and youtube, and sign up for schedule alert e-mails at >> the federal government runs out of funds friday. congressional leaders are negotiating on federal spending for the rest of the budget year. on the floor senators meet at 2 eastern for speeches and vote on a judicial nomination. tomorrow, repeal of a tax reporting requirement in the health care law. this week in the house will also
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consider network neutrality and epa greenhouse gas regulation. also house budget committee chairman paul ryan released the republican 2012 budget. the house gavels in today at 2 eastern live on c-span. this afternoon, charles murray talks about what he calls the state of white america. in particular, economics and class distinctions. live coverage begins at 5:30 eastern on c-span3. >> now, the governors of maryland and virginia along with the mayors of indianapolis and oklahoma city on reducing high school dropout rates in the nation's schools. this is about 40 minutes. >> well, we were, we were supposed to be joined by cory booker, the mayor of newark, and i'm sorry he's not here. i was dying to ask him how everyone can get some money out of mark zuckerberg for their own cities, but we'll have to do
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that some other time. [laughter] to start, governor o'malley, maryland, i know you're very proud of the fact that maryland ranks number one in education, and -- [cheers and applause] and you haven't a -- >> oh, come on, none of that, none of of that. >> you have an 80% overall graduation rate, and you're a race to the top winner. but you do have 27 dropout factory high schools in your state. so what, what are you doing about that? what are you going to do to try to raise the graduation rate in those places? >> well, there's a number of different strategies that are all implementded with the local education agencies, associations. i mean, some the most important things that we did in baltimore city was to take some of the larger high schools and split them up into smaller schools. and also being able to create themes in some of the high schools for a career path,
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career and college readiness. those were very important. another thing that we've done over the last few years is to expand the number of career and technical education offerings. we've gone from 30 to 38. to the extent that we're better able to match up the cte with the places where we have the greatest dropout problems, i think we we've realized a lot more of the goal of graduating more of our kids. so those are some of the things we do, but all of o them come down to relationship. the most important thing for turning around any high school is having a great principal. and that is that training pipeline for new principals is not something we've yet done as well as we need to. that was part of our race to the top application and we're told that with johns hopkins university of maryland we'll be better able to integrate that pipeline of training and
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recruitment so we get those best leaders into our high schools that have had the greatest challenges but also, therefore, the greatest opportunities for progress. >> ordinarily, we would start with the governors and then the mayors, but i want to mix it up. we are v a lot of smarts, and i'm going to turn to the mayor of indianapolis where according to our numbers, your dropout rate is actually quite high. and that, in fact, only 49% of your, of your high school graduates actually graduate. now, and that there are eight dropout factories in end nap race. but i want you to use that as a leaping-off point to tell us what you identify as the challenges and what you see as the opportunities. >> i believe that number that you're talking about is the number for one of our school districts. actually, in indianapolis we we have 11 school districts and 80%
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overall graduate. what we have done in indianapolis, we have the chamber of commerce has come together and started a program called the common goal. and just a few years ago, for instance, across the city of indianapolis -- not just that one particular district -- the graduation rate was around 68-69%. now it's at 80. within that district, the urban district, if you will, that graduation rate is now at 56%. what we've done is put graduation coaches into the schools. kind of like communities and school, we put people into the schools from the community, the nonprofits have come together and worked very, very hard to make sure those kids have the resources and the -- >> you call them graduation coaches? >> graduation coaches. that's the chamber of commerce has put in there, again, supported by united way which has been a tremendous partner in the city of indianapolis. so many other people, large companies have come together to try to help out.
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so it is kind of like the community coming into the school to help out, and the numbers certainly in the last three years, we've seen an increase. >> golf mcdonnell -- governor mcdonnell, you have with 77% statewide graduation rate, but you do have 25 dropout factory schools. where is the dropout crisis on your agendasome. >> well, it's high. obviously, finishing high school and, hopefully, going on to either a good job or a college education is really access to the american dream. so i think that it's going to take a concerned parent and a motivated teacher, really, to solve this problem. and secondly, is to be able to tie education to economic development and job creation. the kids have to see where it's going. not just the degree itself, but it's access to a good job and, thus, your dreams for the future. we've employed a couple of strategies that i think are
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helping one of the dropout prevention and intervention program. we've got turn around professionals going into those schools with a high dropout rate and doing some very intense work with teachers, particularly -- and principals and others. secondly, we have some reforms that we've passed to try to create a little competition within the school system. charter schools, college lab schools, merit pay. virtual schools, not all kids learn in the classroom. i think all of those are part of the answer. creating schools where people want to learn and seeing that it's the ticket to a well-paying job in the future, i think, is key. >> i would like for mayor cornett to weigh in on it. in oklahoma city you've got, i think, it's a 63% dprawtion rate. seven dropout factories.
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not only how high is this on your list of priorities, but what do you do about it once it's up there? >> we do have one of our 24 districts that serve kids who live in the cities. one program we have is a truancy program. we got our police department involved so the moment a kid starts showing a tendency to be true want, we have a police officer on the porch of that house. if we can engage the parent on the front end, we'll probably have a -- >> can i ask you a question without leaping too far ahead? how do you have the resources -- >> because if we don't, we're going to be dealing with that kid six months later under a different situation. [applause] we've got to keep him in school. you let a kid drop out of school, the idea that he's going to run into a police officer down the line is almost guaranteed. >> my impression from what i've read about you is that your
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education program is focused on rebuilding all the schools in the city. >> which that's right. >> now, how does that link up to applying resources to dropouts? >> we add a one cent penny on the dollar sales tax to rebuild every build anything the inner city district. the idea being that if a kid had a better environment, the kid's more likely to want to be in school, a teacher's more likely to want to teach at that school, and the parent's more likely to want to be this on parent/teacher night. we're at the point of around emergency. the new high schools are all opened up, we're working on the grade schools. by the end of this year, we'll have virtually all 75 of the buildings done. it was something the few could provide. -- the city could provide. it's a little more difficult, but we're rolling up our slaves and getting as -- sleeves and getting as involved as the
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district will allow us to be. >> did you have to have a bond issue to get your -- or a referendum to get -- >> we did. we had to go to the voters. the people that tended to vote yes on initiatives doesn't live in that inner city district. we had to get them to buy into the fact that the quality was important to their quality of life. and we passed the refer dumb 60% back in november of 2001 and collected the dollar. some of the money went to the suburban districts, but the bulk of the money went to that one district that had so many issues it was never going to work its way out alone. >> governor o'malley, can you imagine that working in maryland? >> i can. we increased our sales tax by a pen gnu, and we've had two years in a row of the highest amount ever invested in public education. we've increased by 1.1 billion just over the last four or five
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years. we're at a time in our country right now where everybody wants to eat cake and lose weight. we all want great schools -- [laughter] we all want great schools but -- [applause] we all want great schools but too often -- >> you realize they're all eating cake right now. >> right. [laughter] we have to be honest with one another. we all want great schools, but at the same time many of us want leaders that tell us what solves our nation's problem is another tax cut or lower taxes. there's no way to build schools without paying for them, and that's why -- [applause] you know, and that's why i leaned forward when i heard the mayor talking about what he was able to do. to be able to do that throughout your whole city. we need to -- we're one of only 17 states that does anything on school construction. most states don't have, put any dollars toward school construction. in our state we do.
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in fact, over the last four years we have funded even with 5.6, now $6.6 billion in cuts and reductions, we've funded an all-time high over these last four years in school renovation and school construction in our state. we are one of only eight that still has a aaa bond rate, and we believe that education is the most important thing we can do to win the future so that our kids have jobs, and we have a better economy. and that's why we make that investment. it's something we're only able to do by forging that precious on seven jus necessary to do the -- consensus necessary to do the important things like putting on a progress i have income tax or, god forbid, even asking corporations to pay a little more on their corporate income taxes. [applause] >> governor, i take it that your, that taxes are not something that you'd like to raise. but what is the budget situation for schools in virginia? i mean, all over the country
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we're slashing school budgets. what are you doing to, facing your budget deficit problems? >> like most chief executive officers of the state, there are some tough choices that have to be made. we cut $4.2 billion out of our budget last year, and we had to make reductions in k-12, in higher ed, in health care because we felt it was not the right time in this economy to raise taxes on the citizens of virginia. so we made those tough choices and six months later ended up with a budget surplus. and now this year we have been able to reinvest about $100 million in higher education, about another 110 in k-12. so we are now tushing the -- turning the corner, you know, i think in our state. i think it's probably fair to say that we should not overemphasize money. there's no question that it
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takes resources to pay teachers, to build schools, to create innovative programs. but so much, i think, of what determines the outcomes for our young people, again, like what i said, it's a good principle. it's a concern that qualified teacher, it's an engaged parent, and it's the type of environment where the kid comes to school and feels welcome and motivated. so i really think it takes both. and if we don't put more emphasis on quality and outcomes and results and we put too much on income and money, i think we're missing the boat. >> let's talk, mayor ballard, about input and result t. when we think, when we hear about school reform in the most broad definition of it, the conversation often falls to private solution in addition to government input. so let's talk about some of the private solutions. to what degree does, do we have to depend on charitable giving,
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on private investment and on things like charter schools which don't necessarily depend on the traditional model? >> i think, i think it's okay to depend on that sometimes. actually, in our city and most cities across the nation, the larger corporations, the larger nonfederalprofits, they're askie part of the solution, so i'm fine with that. i'm still the only mayor in the country that's allowed to charter schools, and i think charter schools are wonderful. i believe the competition in schools is a good thing. i don't know why choice is looked upon as bad in education and good almost everywhere else. so charter schools are, i think, a good option. i think a lot of reform measure going across the nation have to be looked pause i am -- because i am results-oriented. if you're doing the same things over and over again and saying
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we just need more money, most of the times maybe, but sometimes maybe not. it's the models that aren't working. when we had the graduation coaches and something similar going on with the commitments and schools bringing people into the schools because, as the golf said very well -- as the governor said very well, it is the principal, it is the teacher. he said engaged parent, but there's a lot of kids who don't have an engaged parent. [applause] and we must be cog any sam of that fact. and when some people want to blame the parents. i've never blamed the parents because i believe, personally, we're in a multigenerational cycle where some parents don't know how to help the kids because they never saw it. they don't know what it looks like. [applause] so some kids are smart enough to know they don't want to go home either. it's not a good environment there. so we must put that caring adult in that kid's life. that's why the mentoring programs are so important.
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.. we want competition because we want those kids to graduate. one model does not fit all. i can tell you examples of charter schools where we've done. i know i'm rambling here but i got to tell you but we have one
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school that is just devoted with kids for substance abuse. you want to go to a high school graduation. go to that one. there was six kids of those graduation. none of those kids ever would have graduated in a traditional high school. none of them. >> the model that you're describing is sort of the model that this graduation program and the civic marshall plan describes. i mean, you've seem to have done it. i don't know how familiar with what's being discussed here. i mean, that's it. to take these problem schools and surround them with the support that the families and the kids need to help support education reform, after-school programs, tutors like that that. to what extent governor mcdaniel, are you showing concerted effort to the problem schools around virginia.
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>> i think that's a very good model. you can't -- you can't address the problem unless you address the entire community in which that young person grows up. a community in school program is very good. it's been a great model for the city of richmond and it takes at the holistic approach that the young child might have to face. and it creates the alternative environments through distance education and so forth that they can use to excel. they don't have a one size fits all approach and they look at that school and try to intergrate the social service systems and the education systems to provide everything that that young person might need to achieve. so that's the approach that we've taken. we've reduced the number of schools that haven't astained compliance with the standards of learning down from 72 to about 19 this year so we're on the right track making progress and
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looking at those individual schools. the other thing that we've tried to do -- we haven't talked about and i think it's critically important is we have got to ratchet up the s.t.e.m. focus in our elementary and high school. [applause] >> it's frightening the way, i think, in some degree we're falling behind some other nations in the number of young people that graduate in science technology, engineering math health care. these are the things that will keep the well paying jobs in the future and these are the things that will keep america an amazing nation and keep the technology revolution that's going on in america great and these are frankly the things through s.t.e.m. and first robotics programs and really things that captivate and have these young people get them interested in school again. so i think if they're excited to be there. >> you want to add things that you want to do now and doesn't that cost money and where do you get it? >> yeah, we have -- if you look at what's happened, i think, in this country over the last
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couple decades, it's generally not been money. in virginia i can tell you we've increased our student enrollment over the last decade over 7 or 8% but the amount of new funding for education has gone up about 45 or 50%. so it's actually outpaced the rate of growth in student enroll. so in an inflation adjusted per capita basis we're still growing even with the cuts we've made. i think it's about again back to governor o'malley's contention good leadership in the school stretching those dollars farther and putting them into the things that you know has worked. focusing on outcome, not just input. >> mayor cornett, how do you begin to prioritize in a time of economic stress? we all agree in this room, i'm preaching to the choir, that there is a straight line between educational achievement and economic development. and that there's a good reason for private companies, for governments to be engaged in this, but at some point choices have to be made about resources. you can move them around on the
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plate. you can put some here and put there but eventually you have to decide as a chief executive where the emphasis goes. how do you even begin to do that? >> well, first, public safety is the priority of city government. and from an educational perspective, i think it's important to keep the philanthropist engaged. if the philanthropists ever get to the point where they don't ever think their investment is going anywhere they will withdraw. you have to keep a connection between the educational leaders, your superintendent, your school board leaders, the fill lan throw pssts and the city government and the mother people you can get pulling on the same rope, the better chances you are going to be. but in times like that and budgets get squeezed and i hear these guys talking about having to cut the budget, you got to keep the philanthropists involved because -- >> give me an example how that's worked for you in oklahoma city. >> we have a program called ed ucare and i don't know if it has the same name everywhere. it's going bo into our weakest performing zip codes and putting
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highly qualified teachers and providing educational services for those kids, aged 2, 3. george kaiser is one of the chief philanthropists but the in as much foundation is a benefitefactor. if you get to those kids even in the weakest underperforming zip codes you can make a difference. it's not the kids. but there's still a question of can you afford that high level of early childhood education? and if not, what can you afford? how much can you dial it back and still get some superior results? >> what -- what are the rest of you doing about preschool, early childhood education? do you have programs for that? >> one of the most important things we were able to do with the increased funding from the thornton initiative, which was about the last six or seven years of ramping up was to be
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able to go to full-day kindergarten throughout our state. when we did that in baltimore city, the year before we did that, not a single grade scored majority proficient in reading or math. the very next year after we had full-day kindergarten, the first graders were not only majority proficient in reading and math, i think the -- they've now gotten to a point where we are now above the national average in reading and math. and now grades 1 through 8 are majority proficient after eight years of full-day kindergarten so full-day kindergarten made a huge difference for us and then we similarly have been putting together sort of a collaborative approach to target the pre-k interventions in the zip codes that need it the most, bringing together foundations and others for our ready to learn initiative so that more and more of our children in our state are ready to learn by the time they're ready for kindergarten. >> mayor, would you follow up
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with that? >> we have many programs similar to what mayor cornett said. a lot of private organizations have come along, going into the most difficult areas of our city. and they make sure that these kids, 3, 4, 5 years old have what they need to get done. be prepared for the first grade. so that's a big part of our philanthropy in the city of indianapolis. we're lucky to have some big funders. we're lucky to have a lot of people who want to do these sorts of things in indianapolis. and i think it's had an impact. >> i'd like to divide the rest of our conversation into two generally topic areas. who's teaching and who's learning? starting with you governor mcdonnell. the question has come down to tenure and collective bargaining and testing. how would you prioritize that in terms of what -- our conflicts here which is how to keep kids from dropping out of school? how important is that? and how do you change it if you need to change it?
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>> i'm sorry, gwen, what -- >> focusing on who's teaching and tenure? >> i think it's very important, again, an able-talented teacher in the classroom with a reasonable class size is critically important. i think all the literature tells you the good outcomes. we're looking to get more people motivated to be in the teaching profession. that means everything from looking at salary issues to making an easy pass to licensure for former military to be able to get more people interested in the profession. so i think that's number one is recruitment. secondly, i know we have looked at the issue of continuing contract, which is our version of tenure for k-12 to see whether or not modifications may need to be made there. with those efforts they've typically not been successful in the legislature. but if you look at what makes
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people excel in american business, i think having an at-will environment where people can discipline and hire and fire according to actual performance has worked well and if you don't have that in the public area. and i would like to hire the best people and have the people that aren't performing well is exit quickly. i think the president's merit pay is excellent. i put money in the budget for our merit pay in our budget this year and i think working with the federal government with some of the things they are doing in that area will really help to provide the incentives for teachers not only to enter the profession but then to excel while they're there and tying their performance. and we ought to use it more in government. >> governor o'malley? >> let me just raise the question differently. and i'll ask you all to answer this question. do you regard teacher unions as an ally or an impediment to school reform? let's just put it on the line.
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[laughter] >> i think it strikes a note out there. you can start. you're generally regarded as being prolabor. >> lucky you. [laughter] >> i thought your question would be, do you see your teachers unions as an ally or an impediment to student achievement and student progress? and so i don't know. i don't think reform for reform's sake is something -- i'm much more entrepreneurial. i want to do the things that work to improve student achievement. there is not a large city in america with the possible exception of new york city that's experienced a bigger increase in student achievement over these last eight years than the students of the city of baltimore have, which is not to say that we don't have a lot more progress to make.
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but we're only able to do that because we treated our work force, our teachers, with dignity and with respect. [applause] >> so my administration and the people that have made me look good to the extent i've been able to look good as a manager, we've won all sorts of awards and kudos for performance measurement, performance management. recently the data collaborative, i think, gave maryland an award from going from last place to making tremendous progress on longitudinal data tracking so that we can track that performance. but we don't go into this endeavor with a view that teachers are the enemy. that unions must be destroyed, collective bargaining is bad. look, we're either going to work together to improve student achievement for our kids or you're going to have to find something to do and a lot of times -- a lot of times we have found that managers, not only in
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our public school systems but throughout government use collective bargaining and work rules as an excuse for not doing their job as managers to write people up and to fire them when they're not performs. [applause] >> i know it doesn't make a lot of people happy. i know sometimes it's an easier construct to think unions are big and bad, they're evil, they're stopping all progress from happening but i'll tell you what, mark, in the toughest of times, the people of maryland would not have come together to make greater investments rather than lesser in public education were it not for the advocacy, the performance and the hard work of teachers unions throughout our state who supported us and allowed us to succeed in winning one of the very few race to the top grants. so whether work force is organized or whether it's not organized, i think as a manager, as a ceo, you have to bring people together to achieve results. and that's what we're doing in
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maryland. [applause] >> it's very interesting. where i sit in this in the city i'm in, i'm a republican mayor in a leaning democrat city, but somebody asked me early ons -- one of my staff members asked me early on, are you for unions and are you against unions. i said i'm for the taxpayer if they bring value to the equation then i'm for it. i'm not here politically nobody knows who i am, that's fine. [laughter] >> but all -- but the unions just endorsed me for re-election. so we do treat people with dignity and respect. but what i'm for job speaking is what works. i don't think one model is the answer. different kids require different models. different situations require different things. i mean, that's just the way it is. i think competition is good.
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i think choice is good. so i don't think in -- i mean, i can't speak to the states so i'm not going to speak to the state. i will tell you that when i walk in on a school and if you ever want to have a lot of fun walk into a school completely unannounced. i do it pretty frequently. they are all on task, the teachers are all serious. it's all going on, no matter what school system i walk in on, they're all on task. so that's important to me. so that means something is working there. but also as you mentioned, we have difficult school systems and we have to drill down what is working there and what is not working. i mean, i'm ambivalent there, really, as long as the union is on board with making sure that those kids get educated, i'm all there. and i have not seen any evidence otherwise, frankly. >> well, i'm not ambivalent. i'm the son of a teacher. my mother -- i think i owe most of my capabilities to her.
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she was into early childhood education before it had a name. she taught first grade for 40 years. she was a member of a union. but i will answer your question -- my experiences have taught me that teachers unions are overall an impediment to us bettering education. >> specifically? >> well, protecting teachers who ought to be replaced. over and over again. and i just believe in more of a free market system where better teachers are rewarded. and lesser teachers find another way to make their living. >> governor mcdonnald. >> we banned private sector in virginia so the right to work and the influence of unions either public or private sector is very smaller. i think the governor -- if you're a manager you take care of your people, you motivated them and make sure they're compensated fairly and i think that's the right approach in the public and private sector and really kind of minimizes the need for a union.
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we've got very powerful teacher associations in virginia. they're not a union per se but they have a lot of influence. they bring good ideas to the table and i listen to them. i think we manage well without a union, but the influence or the input of the associations, frankly, representing a large group of professionals is helpful. >> let me go back to mayor -- to governor o'malley a second. i know that you have a merit pay proposal, and maybe it's the law already whereby you can give extra pay to teachers who teach in difficult schools or teach hard or difficult subjects. but what about basing merit pay on student performance? do you favor that? that's usually where the unions are difficult. that they don't -- they don't want people to get fired on the basis of testing results and stuff like that.
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and they also don't want people laid off on the basis of their performance when they have to be laid off but rather on the basis of seniority. so how do you -- how do you resolve that? how do you -- how do you professional -- treat teachers as a profession without holding them accountable for failure and rewarding them for success? >> well, again, i think all of this comes back to management and having good superintendents that are running your local education associations. three things come to mind. in prince george's county prior to race to the top, there was already -- thank you, prince george's county. [applause] >> in prince george's county they already have an agreement whereby they had some merit pay and had worked that out as part of their contract and as part of the bargaining process. in baltimore city, recently they passed a very innovative
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contract. it failed the first time but it passed when it was reconsidered after the union leaders actually pushed it on their members in order to have differentiated pay i think for harder to attract, you know, topics, subject matter and some merit aspects to that. >> but performance -- >> well, and that leads me to the third point which is as part of our race to the top, we had to be committed to the notion that someone we have to come up with a way to tie student progress to teaching and teaching -- teachers performance and we now have a committee that's working our way through how we constitute that 50%. what percent of it is progress on tests, what percent of it is other sort of progress that the student makes, what percent of it is -- you know, how does that 50% come to be made up? and so that's part of what we
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are working our way through right now in a collaborative way. we're not done yet. and there are a lot of strong feelings around that table. but i'd rather have the strong feelings at the table than shot at us from opposite sides of the building. >> we are shockingly running out of time but i don't want to run out of the conversation about the people who are learning. most of the people in this room who are concerned about this understand that at the key -- at the heart of this debate are people who are -- children who are not learning. many of whom are people who look more like me than like you on this panel, which is to say they are children of color they are people who come from single-parent homes and they are people who don't have advantages. there's an achievement gap which has sprung out with some of the things we talked about that we might address. starting with you and we have to keep it relatively brief, starting with you, mayor ballard and how you tackle that very
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specific problem? >> i think this goes back to the community. we deal with this all the time. it's heartbreaking some of these stories are just heartbreaking when you see them. but we're very lucky in indianapolis. we have a lot of people who are dealing with this issue straight on. and we will continue to do that. we got to make sure the political leaders in the state get lined up well. as you know, as people have been following we have a little issue right now going on in the state of indiana. but the education -- educational reformists i think are going in the right direction so we want to make sure because that is exactly who they're trying to address. >> mayor cornett? >> what i'm saying is the african-american community dispersing throughout the city into the other districts, you know, we have that one lowly performing district which is primarily people of color actually there's larger hispanic percentage than there are african-american but our african-american community is now dispersing throughout all 620 square miles of our
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community and i think to a certain extent i think that's helping resolve the question. these african-american parents are making choices to help better their kids' future. and i think that is going to be a great step toward the line. there's no question in america, in oklahoma, in oklahoma city, it is a disadvantage general to be an african-american person. and i'd love to change it. i'm sure everyone here on the panel would love to change it but it's not going to happen quickly and it's only going to happen if we all work together to try work -- first of all, come to the conclusion that it's the truth, and then work together to see what where we can resolve it. >> and come to a different conclusion of what the causes are behind the truth? >> absolutely. there are social issues that are prevalent that we've ignored too long. >> governor -- i guess i'll start with governor mcdonnell and begin -- >> the person's work ethic and their god-given intellect really ought to be determined the american dream and not where they live. i think that's critically important. i think the things we talked about early using charter
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schools, college laboratory schools to create some competition and alternatives particularly in some of those communities to raise the bar is part of the approach. most of the money we're putting in the turn-around school who have a high number of minority students and also where some of the achievement gap is. and then again recruiting, having incentives to recruit teachers to those schools where you need the biggest increase in performance. i think all those together will help turn things around. >> in our state, we firmly believe there's no such thing in maryland as fair american. that every child is needed. every child has to be successful. and we are very proud of the progress we are making and hope to be able to repeat that progress again. we have been able to cut in half the achievement gap between black and white students in our states over the last six years. and we believe we can do that again. [applause] >> and we believe we can do that again if we keep focus, if we
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implement the longitudinal data tracking. if we drive our decisions and base by the data and target our interventions where they can do the most good and where they're most needed. >> governor o'malley, governor mcdonnell, mayor ballard, thank you all so much. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, that concludes this session. concurrent sessions will begin downstairs at the washington room at 1:45. we'll see you back here for dinner at 6:30. have a great afternoon. [inaudible conversations]
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>> tonight on the communicators fort worth commissioner michael copps on the proposed at&t/t-mobile merger. >> what troubles plea this kind of sucks the oxygen out of so many issues that are pending before the federal
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communications commission. you know, we can chew gum and walk at the same time, i guess, but this affects so much of what we're doing. >> the communicators tonight on c-span2. >> now, former massachusetts governor and 2008 republican presidential candidate mitt romney. he spoke this weekend at the republican jewish coalition. from las vegas, this is about 50 minutes. >>. >> good morning, good morning. thank you. thank you. [applause] >> ambassador fox, for your generous introduction.
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it's good to be with you this morning. and i'm looking forward to your questions. i have more of a conversation in mind this morning as opposed to a speech. i did put some notes down so i'm going to refer to them from time to time but i would like to get your perspective on some issues and i'll share my perspective as well but i first want to say thank you for you for hosting this event and bringing such an esteemed group of people together. thank you to chairman pflumm for his leadership and matt brooks for his extraordinary leadership as well. thank you to the aidlesons for opening their home. it's not a bad place. what an extraordinary contribution this couple has made to jewry around the world. thank you very much. [applause] >> and thanks to the rjc to elect conservatives across the country. we had a good november. and to a great degree, thanks to
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the rjc and like-minded people across this country who said they wanted to see real change in washington. you guys made it happen. and we republicans are flying high because nancy pelosi is flying coach. [laughter] [applause] >> this is very good news. [coughing] >> now, there are a number of people in this room who were extraordinarily helpful to me during my campaign to run for president last time around. and sam is one of those. and, of course, the ambassador here. i see a whole series -- sheli, many people who are part of that team. i want to say thank you to you. i'm sorry i didn't get the job done. i wanted to become the nominee but, of course, should i become the nominee then i was the guy who lost to barack obama. [laughter] >> that's not necessarily written in stone but my goodness it was a very difficult time and when the economy got in real trouble, why, it was very, very hard for republicans but, boy, we have come back in a massive way thanks to your leadership and your effort. now, i also saw a you been in of you at the tribute about a week
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ago in washington, d.c. at the kennedy center for george herbert walker bush and his contribution to volunteerism to the points of light foundation. a number of you were there. if you weren't there, it was on tv last monday. and if you watched it, you saw there were a number of country performers there. i like country music. i'm not an extraordinary fan. i can't tell you all the artists i do have some favorites. i began humming an event i song i remember kenny rogers, you picked a fine time to leave me lucille. for those who don't know it, the refrain is you picked a fine time to leave me lucille with four hungry children and a crop in the field. you picked a fine time to leave me lucille. and i say that because given all that's been happening in the world, the tumult in the world, given the fact that our economy was collapsing, we picked a fine time to pick as our president a man who has no experience in the private sector, no experience in goes, no experience really in
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leadership. and the consequence of seeing someone learn on the job in the presidency has not been a pretty sight. [applause] >> and that has been true both in foreign policy and in domestic policy. let me just step back a moment. we have since since president truman a pretty consistent foreign policy in the nation. president truman and dean atchison following the second world war said, look, we got to rethink american foreign policy. and dean atchison in his book "the president at its creation" found a new vision for america's foreign policy. it had a number of elements but three of these were the following, one, we would be involved in the world. we would not be isolationists. we would be involved because we have found by being isolationists to a certain degree, that we have been drawn in to the conflicts of the world at great loss. secondly, we would promote our values. we would promote freedom and opportunity, free enterprise and
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free trade and human rights. we would promote those things we believed in because we found -- [applause] >> we have found that those nations that had adopted those principles tended to be more peaceful. and finally, we would be strong. we would acknowledge that there were good guys and bad guys. that we'd understand that there was evil in the world. that some people had as their intention to oppress others. and so we recognized that. we would be strong and we would link our arms with our friends around the world as allies because together we could be stronger than any one nation could be alone. that's been the foundation of america's foreign policy for a long time. [applause] >> now, when the president came into office, the question was, would he adhere to that foreign policy that had been in place through -- well, the 1940s. and the first test interestingly that comes to my mind was in honduras where the supreme court there said the pro-marxist,
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pro-chavez anti-american president had violated their constitution and, therefore, he should be removed and the military removed him and then president obama insisted he gets put back in office. think what that message was around the world? and, of course, in colombia in south america as one of our best allies in opposing chavez he gives the straight arm to the special trade relations which colombia is seeking. and then you have -- of course, you have what happened with a dissident voices taking to the streets of iran instead of immediately and cheering these voices that are seeking freedom and change there, he had nothing to say. so the world recognized that instead of promoting these values in an aggressive and dynamic way, he was going to be silent at least in some circumstances. and then it went on to the question of the extent of our solidarity with our allies. would we link arms with our allies and beat them in private if we disagreed? but to the world, stand with our arms linked. and that was evidenced in his
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inaugural address at the united nations, where the president chastised our best ally in the middle east, israel. castigated israel for building settlements and had nothing to say about hamas launching thousands of rockets into israel. think what message that sends. is it better to be a friend of america or a foe of america? and, of course, then he won the nobel peace prize as part of this whole process. [laughter] >> and i think that was in part because of an assessment that he -- that he was going to engage iran and engage with north korea and syria. we would have this engagement policy and reach out to them. how has that worked out by the way? [laughter] >> think of that, north korea, south south korean ship shelled an island -- a south korean island, launched long-range missiles. did a nuclear test and, of course, iran continues to arm and fund hezbollah and hamas and presumably the taliban as well. supporting the insurgents and is pursuing their own nuclear folly. it has not worked out terribly
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well. it seems to me that he is following an unusual belief. and he said it in a speech or two that we all have common interests. and there's probably a sense in which that makes a certain degree of logic. but i don't think he understands that not all the leaders in the world have common interests or all the people of the world have common interests. in fact, some people want to oppress other people and exploit other people. and kill other people. we're not like them. and we don't have common interest with them. we have interests with people who seek and love freedom. [applause] >> one of the most distressing products of this wandering foreign policy was the engagement with russia. as you recall he wanted to reset relations with russia. russia has been for some time our number one geopolitical adversary.
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they're not an enemy. but when as a matter of gee opolitical significance they try to pull to the side and try to pull people with them. and they have as their number one objective for a long time the removal of our missile defense system from eastern europe. this president decided to give them that. now, he can explain all the reasons he wanted to do it but had he been an experienced negotiator, he'd recognize that even if you want to give the person across the table from you exactly what they want, you don't tell them that up front. [laughter] >> instead, you think about what you want. [laughter] >> and you get something in return. instead, he gave them their number one objective, our number one adversarial player on the geopolitical stage. gave them their number one goal. and what did he get in return? what could he have gotten, he could have gotten, i believe, a commitment on their part to say they will not cripple sanctions to iran for their nuclear program. that's what he should have done. that's what experience would
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have done. mra[applause] >> now we have the tumult in the middle east and it's hard to tell where it's going to be. it could be one of the positive developments in the last 50 years in the middle east with -- with nations embracing modernity or coming to grips with modernity and seeking more representative forms of government. or it could be one of the worst things that has happened in the last 50 years with nations turning towards radical violent islamic jihadism. and america should have a lot to say and great effort in how that develops. but i must admit i was distressed by hearing our secretary of state characterize mr. assad as a reformer. this is not a good start. and america must devote our intellect and political and diplomatic resources to help move these nations towards modernity and provide for greater stability and ultimate peace in that part of the world and, of course, in the entire world.
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i'd also tell you that i think the president's inexperience in negotiations contributed to less than positive developments on the israeli/palestinian negotiating front. now, why do i say that? well, my guess is that the president came out and was critical of israel in part because he wanted to show the arab world and the palestinians in particular that he was impartial. that he was a neutral party. now i know from negotiating that's not how you start. you want the people around the table to know who you're going to stand by. you're with them, you're locked arms there. you're friend your ally and you want vary from them and he said look i'm going to be critical on israel and tougher on the settlements than the palestinians are. and by doing that, he had to predictable but unintended consequence of convince guess the palestinians they could get a better deal with americans than with the israeli or perhaps
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have america standing on the side with the u.n. and so the palestinians were parameters less anxious to sit down at the negotiating table in part with president netanyahu because he was so critical of the prime minister that they wonder whether we might try to push him out of office. at the same time, you think what was the impact on the -- on the mind of the israelis as they were negotiating? well, they'd say, gosh, well, we had some bad experience cedeking territory and now palestine has moved in and iran has moved in -- their surrogates, of course, hezbollah and hamas and rocket fire is from gaza. if we move from the west bank nearly surround them on three sides of jerusalem, and, of course, within the stone's throw and certainly a rocket's launch from tel-aviv, they recognize, gosh, this could be very, very
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dangerous to hand over the west bank and the only way we could do it if america was with it d and -- and the lack of confidence israeli want to pull back from the negotiating table. the consequence of not understanding negotiations has been extraordinarily difficult and this president, i think, in part has said, i'm so anxious to retreat from the policies of the prior administration that he didn't realize he was also retreating from the policies of truman and kennedy and eisenhower and nixon and reagan. and this nation needs those policies and our commitment to freedom and strength and to our allies. [applause] >> now, i think most americans recognize that the president's missteps on domestic policy has been just as consequential.
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and i recognize, as you do, that when he came into office he did not create the financial crisis. it was already underway and things were getting worse. and i fault him for a number of things. number one, some of you have been in the business world -- can i see by a show of hands all the people in this room who have been in business or have been in business. yeah, that's what i thought. so he has -- he came into a setting where you as business people recognize if you've got an enterprise in trouble, if you've got a business that's falling apart, there are -- there are three rules for turn-around: focus, focus and focus. find out what's critical and focus on it. what was critical is he came into office was the economy and what he did instead of focusing on it was delegating it the nancy pelosi and harry reid and they put together a $787 billion -- almost a trillion dollar borrowing and spending program and instead of creating
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incentives for the private sector to buy capital goods and to hire people, they instead sent money off to protect state workers and that money lasted about a couple of years and now the states are having to pay the piper as they take that on finally. the one sector we could have afforded to shrink was the governmental sector. but instead of promoting the private sector, he protected the governmental sector. and as a result, that stimulus was a lot of money borrowed and a lot of money spent with very little return. and then he focused on what he really cared about. his own liberal agenda. first of all, we're going to have cap-and-trade. we're going to disparage oil, gas, coal, nuclear. we're going to pursue a policy of making energy costs much higher and then we're going to have card check. the idea that we'll unionize every business in america whether or not their employees want it. and then, of course, there was obamacare. we're going to have the federal government take over from the states the responsibility for care for the poor in their states. and the list goes on of his
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agenda. there was, of course, dodd-frank, the bill that reregulated the financial industry, 2,000 pages, the regulation that is yet to be written and then there was the concept of massive deficits as far as the eye could see. you know, in the business world, we can deal with bad news. those of you who have been in business know that if the government does something bad, you can deal with it. it can be painful but you can danielle with it. the one thing you can't deal with is uncertainty. if you don't know what's going to happen down the road you can't take action. so cap-and-trade, to those that are energy intensive energies they didn't know what their costs would be so they pulled back given the uncertainty and card check, people who hire a lot of folks didn't know what the cost of labor was going to be so they pulled back. and obamacare -- if you're in the one-fifth of the economy that's health care you didn't know what the future is going to be you pulled back at the very time we wanted entrepreneurs and innovators and small business to be stepping forward and growing, it became more uncertain and pulled back and as a result,
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this president has caused the deepening and the lengthening of this recession, this downturn. just yesterday i was here in las vegas, and i went by the home -- david and cathy tyler's home. they live in north las vegas. their home is in a neighborhood with a high number of foreclosures. i'll tell you it just breaks your heart. unemployment is not a statistic. unemployment is real pain and sorrow in the lives of a lot of people. and interestingly, not just those that are unemployed. as i was at the tyler's home and you see empty homes in their community. one home, for instance, the yard is all messed and the garage door and it's clear there's people sleeping in this abandon house. unemployment hurts those even those that are employed. you know, i was astonished by


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